EPL: Poor form haunts Chelsea ahead of toughest week

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Can Chelsea recover from poor run?
London, Nov 19: Reigning European Champions Chelsea will have their work cut-out trying to grasp three points against Juventus in the Group E clash of the UEFA Champions League.

EPL: Chelsea fail to close the gap in title race

Although Blues are on top of the table, Shakhtar Donetsk are level with seven points while Juve trail by a single point in third position. In their last encounter at Stamford Bridge, the Londoners gave away a two-goal lead against the Italian champions, ending in a 2-2 draw.

However, looking at Chelsea's recent results in the Premier League, one win in five games which includes two defeats, and comparing that with Juventus' record of one loss in 49 league games, all the odds are against the holders.

Since that controversial defeat to title rivals Manchester United, the Blues have lacked that fluency which flourished at the start of the season. Moreover, Chelsea will certainly miss their inspirational captain John Terry who is out for three weeks with a knee injury.

Juan Mata, Oscar and Ramirez were rested for the loss against West Brom Albion but even their presence couldn't help Chelsea comeback. Fernando Torres, usually unimpressive and ineffective, was substituted at the hour-mark but started alongside Daniel Sturridge for the first time but the England forward failed to covert several chances.

As Chelsea face their most difficult week, Juve in Europe and Manchester City in the Premier League Di Matteo has to find the right balance between his defence and holding midfielders due to their attacking style of play.

Centre-back David Luiz and Gary Cahill don't seem to be the right combination for the club while Frank Lampard being replaced by Ramirez in a holding role is unrealistic as the Brazilian is more of an attacking midfielder.

Another drawback for Chelsea, Ashley Cole, also rested during Saturday's defeat, has been absent through injury for several games. But Cole, 31, considered to be the best left-back in the world, is certain to start against Juve on Tuesday night.

Despite their recent slump in the Premier League, can Chelsea, in their new look attacking style, get back to winning ways or are they missing Lampard, Terry, Cole and Didier Drogba?

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