Five talking points ahead of Maccabi Tel Aviv v Chelsea

Last updated : 23 November 2015



Here Press Association Sport looks at five of the talking points ahead of the Group G game at the Sammy Ofer Stadium in Haifa

WHEN IS A REVIVAL A TRUE REVIVAL?

When Chelsea beat Maccabi 4-0 on September 16 as part of a three-match winning run, many thought that was the end to their miserable start to the season

But worse was to come and Saturday's defeat of Norwich ended a run of three straight Premier League losses which had put Jose Mourinho's position under scrutiny

Was the Norwich win a new start, as Chelsea hope, or a false dawn?

THE COSTA CONUNDRUM

Until he benefited from the quick thinking of Cesc Fabregas to end a six-match scoreless streak, Diego Costa was impersonating Fernando Torres against Norwich

He was guilty of straightforward misses and was in wide positions when he should have been in the box

His only European goal for Chelsea came against Maccabi and he must deliver more if he wishes to retain Mourinho's faith.

DEFENSIVE DURABILITY

Chelsea's clean sheet against Norwich was just their third of the Premier League season, a figure which contrasts starkly with what is expected

Now familiar frailties were exposed and while Maccabi, like Norwich, may not be able to capitalise, Tottenham will have the firepower to trouble them on Sunday

Mourinho will demand a more solid display in readiness for Spurs

EDEN MORE FROM HAZARD?

Hazard bewitched opposition defenders last season and has bewildered even himself this term

Deployed as a central playmaker against Norwich, he thrived at times, boosting his fragile confidence

He needs another fillip and a first goal of the season would help.

FULL-BACK QUANDARY

Branislav Ivanovic and Kenedy, an attacking player, were Chelsea's full-backs against Norwich, with the dependable Cesar Azpilicueta on the bench

A stronger opponent would have exposed Chelsea out wide more and Mourinho knows he must shore up the flanks for forthcoming challenges.

Source : PA

Source: PA

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