Chelsea would prefer to win its Champions League group by beating Zenit Saint-Petersburg on Wednesday in Russia, but won’t risk much just for a seeded place in the Round of 16 (start time 12:45pm ET with live updates via NBCSports.com).
Zenit, meanwhile, knows that it won’t be playing at home in the European Cup final but has even less to play for besides the home crowd.
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Zenit will head to the Europa League, but the long travel for Chelsea means nothing is assured for the Blues, who could be passed for the group win by Juventus.
The Turin side faces Malmo in Sweden, but will only pass Chelsea by bettering the Blues’ result.
Here’s everything you need for Zenit vs Chelsea.
Zenit team news, injuries, lineup options
Goalkeeper Stanislav Kritsyuk is out through injury, while Dmitri Chistyakov and Yarosklav Rakitskiy miss out with card suspensions.
— FC Zenit in English✨ (@fczenit_en) December 8, 2021
Chelsea team news, injuries, lineup options
Mateo Kovacic is out with a positive COVID-19 test, while Trevoh Chalobah, N’Golo Kante, and Ben Chilwell are out with injuries. Marcos Alonso and Kai Havertz are on the bench, while Romelu Lukaku starts and Jorginho misses out.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 8, 2021
Odds and ends (full odds provided by our partner, PointsBet)
Don’t tell the bookies Chelsea has little to win and a long way to travel, because a Blues win pays just -195 and a draw hands out +320. If Zenit wins, the payoff is +540.
PointsBet is our Official Sports Betting Partner and we may receive compensation if you place a bet on PointsBet for the first time after clicking our links.
We’d love to have the benefit of Chelsea’s Starting XI before making this call, especially knowing that St. Petersburg’s weather is set to be a balmy 5 degrees Fahrenheit… and under a retractable roof. Zenit 1-1 Chelsea.