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Mourinho wary of Drogba in Galatasaray opener

Reluctant to play up Chelsea FC's credentials – "four or five teams are ahead of us" – José Mourinho has a "strange feeling" about a reunion with Galatasaray AŞ's Didier Drogba.

Mourinho wary of Drogba in Galatasaray opener
Mourinho wary of Drogba in Galatasaray opener ©UEFA.com

Reunited with Didier Drogba – a player who served him so well during his first stint at Chelsea FC but gave him cause for alarm last season – José Mourinho has a "strange feeling" about Wednesday's UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg at Galatasaray AŞ. In the opposite dugout will be Roberto Mancini, Mourinho's predecessor at FC Internazionale Milano, who aims to achieve a result that "gives us hope" for the return in west London on 18 March. 

Roberto Mancini, Galatasaray coach

Chelsea are one of the best teams in Europe. They've won the Champions League before [in 2012] and are always in the competition, but we need to fight against them and make use of home advantage.

We'll be able to use more of our foreign players tomorrow. We may change the team a little. Wesley [Sneijder] will play, for example, but we are a good team regardless. We can play in any system, be it 4-4-2 or 3-5-2. The mentality and attitude [of the players] is important.

Chelsea are a young team, they are top of the Premier League. They have really good, fantastic players who can influence the outcome of a match. I believe Chelsea have an 80% chance of going through in this competition.

Didier Drogba was an important player for Chelsea. Sneijder won the Champions League with Mourinho and they have a nice relationship, but we need both Wesley and Didier to play well tomorrow. Then they can go out for dinner after the match!

Two teams with some really good players will meet tomorrow. Those players can decide this game – unfortunately, myself and Mourinho can't play. I don't know what the key will be for the match. It will be important to pay attention to some situations because Chelsea could score from any opportunity they get. We would like a result that gives us hope for the second leg in London.

Weekend result
Saturday: Galatasaray 1-0 Beşiktaş JK (Selçuk İnan 38pen)

Muslera; Semih, Ceyhun (Yekta 69), Hakan; Veysel, Felipe Melo, Selçuk, Sneijder (Gökhan 81), Alex Telles; Burak, Drogba.

• Galatasaray have lost only one of their last 19 games in all competitions and are 16 matches unbeaten at home (W13 D3). They have won just four of 17 away fixtures all season.

Team news
Aydın Yılmaz (ankle) and Gökhan Zan (hamstring) are both available again, while Aurélien Chedjou has sat out the last four fixtures with a right groin problem.

José Mourinho, Chelsea manager

I like to play against the best and Galatasaray are the Turkish champions. As for Drogba, we will have to do our job because we know he will want to do his, which is to score goals. It is a strange feeling to play him and we have to try to forget it.

Last season Galatasaray made it very difficult for me with Real Madrid and this year will be no different. They were a good team and they have almost exactly the same team, but have strengthened with a few extra players. They have a new left-back, right-back, holding midfielder – they also kept their attacking stars.

We are going to play to win, but we know they are strong and have special attacking players – even on the bench they have dangerous players like [Umut] Bulut. They have lots of goalscorers and we know they will attack us. We are trying to build a team for the future and we will play the way we always do, which is to try to win the game.

This round is very important – anything is possible when you get to the quarter-finals, even if you are not favourites. We are not favourites as there are four or five teams who are above us in terms of their players and their status. But Chelsea won it when they were not favourites and I have won it twice when I have not been a favourite.

Weekend result
Saturday: Chelsea 1-0 Everton FC (Terry 90+3)

Čech; Ivanović, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta; Matić, Lampard; Hazard, Oscar (Ramires 46), Willian (Torres 62); Eto'o (Schürrle 69).

• Five points behind leaders Arsenal FC ahead of matchday six, Chelsea are now a point above the Gunners at the top of the Premier League following a 12-match unbeaten run in the division.

Team news
David Luiz (thigh) and John Obi Mikel (unknown) missed out at the weekend, while Oscar was forced off with an ankle injury.

Match fact
• In their last meeting with a Turkish club, Chelsea lost 2-1 at Fenerbahçe SK in the 2007/08 quarter-finals – but won 2-0 at home to progress. They also played Beşiktaş JK in the 2003/04 group stage, succumbing 2-0 at Stamford Bridge but prevailing by the same scoreline in the away game, at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

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