Mourinho calls for ‘top level’ performance

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho says his side will need to be at their very best for Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final second leg against Atletico Madrid. 

Level at 0-0 from the first leg, the Blues have been boosted by the return to fitness of John Terry and Eden Hazard ahead of the big game at Stamford Bridge.

“It is a game where everybody needs to be at the top level – the players and me,” Mourinho declared ahead of his fifth successive Champions League semi-final.

“During the 90 minutes the players are more important than the manager. I trust them a lot and that helps me to be calm.

“When Atletico have the ball we have to defend, when we have the ball we have to attack. This is the football that I know.

John Terry of Chelsea
Terry went off injured in the first leg but has recovered

“When the opponent has the ball you have to work defensively, you have to be organised. When you have the ball you have to try to play according to your players and according to the qualities of your opponent.”

Real Madrid’s semi-final victory against Bayern Munich means there will either be an all-Madrid final in Lisbon or Mourinho will face his former club.

And the 51-year-old is full of respect for La Liga leaders Atletico, who have emerged as one of Europe’s very best teams.

He said: “Atletico was my direct rival for three seasons but I always felt respect.

“I have respect for what they are doing, because to be in the Champions League semi-final is not for every club.

“To have the possibility of winning the league against Barcelona and Real Madrid is something that deserves my respect.”

Keeper Petr Cech trained with the rest of the Chelsea squad on Tuesday but is still recovering from a shoulder injury, so Mark Schwarzer will continue in goal.

Midfielders Frank Lampard and John Mikel Obi are suspended, while Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah are cup-tied.

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