LONDON - If Liverpool want extra inspiration for the enormity of the task they face at Chelsea in the Champions League on Tuesday they need only look as far as Bolton Wanderers. Liverpool need to score at least three goals at Stamford Bridge to have any chance of overcoming Chelsea in the second leg of their quarter-final tie after losing 3-1 at home to Guus Hiddink's men last week. Bolton scored three goals in eight minutes at Chelsea on Saturday although, by the time they managed their first, they were already trailing 4-0 and Chelsea had taken off Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba with the game seemingly won. Although Chelsea held on to beat Bolton 4-3 and keep the pressure on Liverpool and league leaders Manchester United in the Premier League title race, Bolton did show that Chelsea's defence was not impregnable. "I am a bit concerned we let in three, but every match is different," said Chelsea's interim coach Hiddink. "However, let's say it is a lesson learnt." Although Chelsea will be without suspended skipper John Terry in the heart of their defence following a booking in the first leg, they have plenty of fine players in reserve as they proved at Anfield where Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovic made a rare start and scored twice. Ricardo Carvalho, who returned to the side after missing the last three games, is expected to fill Terry's role. Liverpool will be hoping to avoid a second successive exit from the Champions League at Stamford Bridge where they lost in the semi-finals last season. However, they have won there already this season when their 1-0 victory in October ended Chelsea's record 86-match unbeaten home run in the Premier League. HIDDINK FACTOR Since then though, Chelsea have replaced Brazilian coach Luiz Felipe Scolari with Hiddink and seen their fortunes improve hugely under the Dutchman with nine wins in 11 matches in all competitions. Hiddink out-thought his wily rival Rafa Benitez last week by deploying Michael Essien in a man-to-man marking role on Steven Gerrard which neutralised the Liverpool skipper's influence. Gerrard will have to stamp his authority on the match from the start if Liverpool are to make any dent in Chelsea's lead, but they did bounce back well with an emphatic 4-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers on Saturday despite the captain being rested. They will have Javier Mascherano back in midfield following the Argentine's suspension from the first leg. Probable teams: Chelsea: 1-Petr Cech; 2-Branislav Ivanovic, 33-Alex, 6-Ricardo Carvalho, 3-Ashley Cole; 13-Michael Ballack, 5-Michael Essien, 8-Frank Lampard; 21-Salomon Kalou, 11-Didier Drogba, 15-Florent Malouda Liverpool: 25-Pepe Reina; 17-Alvaro Arbeloa, 37-Martin Skrtel, 23-Jamie Carragher, 12-Fabio Aurelio; 14-Xabi Alonso, 20-Javier Mascherano; 18-Dirk Kuyt, 8-Steven Gerrard, 11-Albert Riera; 9-Fernando Torres Referee: Luis Medina Cantalejo (Spain)
13 April 2009
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