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Team news: Lille vs Chelsea

Reece James, who made his Chelsea debut a week ago against Grimsby, begins tonight's game, as does fit-again N'Golo Kante.

With Cesar Azpilicueta, Kurt Zouma, Fikayo Tomori and Marcos Alonso all selected, we may be lining up with three at the back and James as a right wing-back. 

Willian is in the starting line-up so makes his 300th Chelsea appearance. Tammy Abraham continues to lead the attack. 

Lille make two changes to their line-up which lost at Ajax on matchday one. Reinildo Mandava comes in at left-back and Luiz Araujo on the right wing. Our former striker Loic Remy is on the home side's bench. 


Chelsea
Kepa; Azpilicueta (c), Zouma, Tomori, James, Kante, Jorginho, Alonso, Willian, Abraham, Mount.   

Substitutes Caballero, Christensen, Kovacic, Hudson-Odoi, Pedro, Giroud, Batshuayi.

Lille Maignan; Zekicelik, Fonte (c), Gabriel, Mandava; Andre, Soumare; Araujo, Ikone, Bamba; Osimhen.

Substitutes: Leo, Soumaoro, Xeka, Sanches, Yazici, Remy, Bradaric.

The referee is Aleksei Kulbakov from Belarus. 


Stat recap

Avoiding defeat at Lille will take our unbeaten away record in Europe to eight games which will be a new club record. The previous was seven set between November 2008 and November 2009.

The two teams with the most shots on matchday one of the Champions League without scoring were Chelsea (22) and Lille (17).

Chelsea and Lille have never met before in European competition. They are the 52nd team we have played in the Champions League.
 

Lille will be the fifth different French opponent that Chelsea have faced in European competition, all in the Champions League (five wins, five draws, six defeats). The other four were Marseille, Monaco, PSG and Bordeaux.

Chelsea have won seven of our past 12 away group games in the Champions League, losing three, keeping a clean sheet on seven occasions.

Chelsea have lost our last two Champions League matches – we have never lost three in a row in the competition.

Our 0-1 loss to Valencia was our first reverse in European competition in 17 matches (12 wins, four draws). Our previous defeat was at Barcelona in the Champions League round of 16 second leg in March 2018 (0-3), although we did lose on penalties against Liverpool in the Super Cup in August after a 2-2 draw after extra-time in Istanbul.

The Blues have won once in our past seven games in the Champions League, beating Qarabag in November 2017 under Antonio Conte.

Chelsea have won one (and lost five) of our previous eight away games against French sides in the Champions League, beating PSG 3-0 in September 2004.
 

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