Juan Mata warns Chelsea of ‘tricky’ Rubin Kazan trip
Juan Mata has warned Chelsea to expect a "tricky" encounter when the Blues travel to Rubin Kazan in the Europa League on Thursday
Juan Mata has warned Chelsea to expect a “tricky” encounter when the Blues travel to Rubin Kazan looking to book their place in the Europa League semi-finals on Thursday.
Chelsea hold a 3-1 advantage heading into the quarter-final second leg in Russia after their victory at Stamford Bridge last week.
But Mata, who played 89 minutes as Chelsea beat Sunderland 2-1 on Sunday to move back into third place in the Premier League, is wary of the threat posed by the Russian side ahead of their 2,000 journey to Kazan.
“We know how tricky the match in Russia is going to be,” Mata wrote on his blog on grada360.com.
“They are a tough opponent with very good players, as people in Spain can tell after beating Atletico Madrid and Levante.
“[They’re a] compact, competitive side [and] we have to add the cold and the fact that we will play on an artificial pitch. We will need to get used to the bounce of the ball very quickly.
“We go to Russia hoping to get to another semi-final [after reaching the FA Cup last four]. We are very hopeful that we can win the first Europa League for our club.”