Three dangerous players that Chelsea will face in Champions League group stages
Chelsea learned the fate of their Champions League group stage opponents on Thursday and there are some exciting fixtures ahead.
They have been drawn alongside Dutch giants Ajax, who reached the semi-final of last season’s elite European club competition.
Spanish outfit Valencia were the next team to join the Blues and on the last two occasions they were drawn together in the group stages, Chelsea went on to reach the Champions League final.
French side Lille completed the group and each team will face off home and away to find out which two sides reach the knockout rounds.
Frank Lampard’s side know they are going to come up against some quality players in the Champions League and it will be a great test for his young group.
Here are three of the upcoming opposition players that Chelsea should be wary of in the group stages:
Ajax – Dusan Tadic
Ajax were inches away from the Champions League final last season before a remarkable late Tottenham comeback and they have some quality individuals.
Despite losing the likes of Matthijs De Ligt and Frenkie De Jong in the summer, they still have some dangerous players that Chelsea need to keep an eye out on.
Ajax captain Tadic is someone that Chelsea should be well aware of, as he previously played in the Premier League with Southampton.
But the 30-year-old has peaked later in his career since he moved to Amsterdam and is now one of their most creative threats.
The versatile attacker will trouble the Blues defence with his pace and movement, as he can pop up as a winger or a centre-forward.
He has six goals in just eight games so far this season across all competitions and continues to keep getting better.
Tadic weighed in with a stunning 38 goals and 24 assists across all competitions during the 2018/19 campaign, so Chelsea will need to be prepared for him.
Valencia – Goncalo Guedes
Valencia finished fourth in La Liga last season and they are an underrated team that will cause Lampard’s team trouble.
Chelsea need to stiffen up their defence if they are to make a real crack of European football this term and they will be facing some lethal attackers.
Guedes is a highly-rated winger that was directly involved in 12 goals across all competitions last season and is a tricky customer.
The 22-year-old is yet to reach his full potential, but has shown glimpses of magic in a Valencia shirt and also scored the winning goal for Portugal in the Nations League final win against Netherlands in the summer.
He should be looking to make a serious impact in the Champions League this year and Chelsea’s right-back will have a job on their hands against his pace, whether that be Cesar Azpilicueta or Reece James.
Lille – Victor Osimhen
Lille may be considered the underdogs to progress out of the group, but they finished second in Ligue 1 last season and are an impressive outfit.
They may have lost star man Nicolas Pepe to Arsenal in the summer, but shouldn’t be underestimated and will have their own aspirations of reaching the knockouts.
Osimhen may be a name unfamiliar to English audiences, but he’s a rising star that already has five senior international caps for Nigeria and he made the move to France this summer to join Lille.
He’s hit the ground running with four goals in just three games already for his new club in Ligue 1 and has made a smooth transition so far from the Belgian league.
It looks like the 20-year-old may be ready to break into the Lille starting XI on a regular basis and it will be interesting to see if he can make an impact in Europe.
Osimhen is a centre-forward that holds the ball up well and has a physical presence, but is also quick and confident in front of goal.