Willian, Oscar, Torres... The Chelsea players playing for their place at the World Cup

With the World Cup fast approaching, Al Hain-Cole takes a look at the players hoping to prove their credentials both for club and country in the Champions League tonight
No Chelsea player will be more fired up for tonight’s Champions League semi-final against Atletico Madrid than former Vicente Calderon favourite Fernando Torres.

In fact, El Nino need only look at the dazzling form of opposite number Diego Costa this season to realise that he is fighting for far more than just an opportunity to impress his former fans.

Goalscorer Special

Odds from bet365
Diego Costa to score anytime 11/5
David Villa to score anytime 12/5
Fernando Torres to score anytime 3/1
Oscar to score anytime 4/1
Koke to score anytime 10/1
Willian to score anytime 11/1
The Brazil-born striker’s adoption of Spanish nationality poses a significant threat to the misfiring Torres’ place in Vicente del Bosque’s World Cup squad this summer, meaning he will be desperate to outshine his new fellow countryman this evening.

However, with just eight competitive goals to his name in a miserable season, the 106-times capped Spaniard is a relative outsider with bet365 at 15/2 (8.50) to open the scoring, or a generous 3/1 (4.00) to strike anytime.

In contrast, Costa is the 11/2 (6.50) favourite to get the ball rolling with a 36th goal of the campaign and a much safer bet at 11/5 (3.20) to hit the back of the net for the eighth time in this year‘s competition. 

Torres is not the only Chelsea player eager for a place in Brazil this summer, with Oscar 4/1 (5.00) and Willian 11/1 (12.00) also facing stern competition to earn the privilege of representing their country on home turf.

Although one of Luiz Felipe Scolari’s favourites, Oscar’s underwhelming return of just two goals in his last 19 club games means he will feel under pressure to rediscover top form before the end of the season, while Willian is still looking to cement his place in the Selecao squad.

After his match-winning performance against Barcelona in the last round, rising starlet Koke will be hoping to hoping to further endear himself to the Spanish public at Stamford Bridge, and is available at 10/1 (11.00) to give his burgeoning international credentials another major lift with a goal.

On the other hand, la Roja’s all-time leading goalscorer David Villa has endured a difficult season as Costa’s understudy since moving to Atletico last summer in an attempt to boost his World Cup chances, and is on offer at 12/5 (3.40) to find the net.

Diego Costa to score anytime for a 1pt stake at 11/5 (3.20) with bet365

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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.