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UEFA Europa League

PAOK vs Chelsea: TV channel, live stream, squad news & preview

18:50 GMT+3 20/09/2018
Willian Chelsea
The Blues get their continental campaign started in Greece, with the ultimate prize of a place in next year's Champions League the main goal

Maurizio Sarri will lead Chelsea into battle in Europe for the first time on Thursday when they take on Greek outfit PAOK in their first game of the Europa League.

The Blues are competing in UEFA's second-tier club competition this term after failing to secure a Champions League finish in the Premier League last term.

They have been drawn alongside Belarusian side BATE Borisov and Hungary's MOL Vidi as well as PAOK and will be aiming to get off on the right foot with three points.

With a potential route into next season's Champions League the reward for the tournament winners, there is plenty at stake for the Stamford Bridge club in this competition.

Game PAOK vs Chelsea
Date Thursday, September 20
Time 5:55pm BST / 12:55pm ET

TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch

In the United States (US) the game will be available to watch live on television via UniMas and it can be streamed live online using Univision NOW or B/R Live.

US TV channel Online stream
UniMas Univision NOW / B/R Live

The game can be watched live on television in the United Kingdom (UK) via BT Sport 2 and it can be streamed live online using the BT Sport app.

UK TV channel Online stream
BT Sport 2 BT Sport app

Squads & Team News

Position PAOK squad
Goalkeepers Rey, Paschalakis, Siampanis, Balomenos
Defenders Matos, Varela, Tosca, Malezas, Crespo, Vieirinha, Lyratzis, Khacheridi, Tsaousis, Michailidis, Diamantis, Kitsiou
Midfielders El Kaddouri, Mauricio, Pelkas, Limnios, Wernbloom, Biseswar, Shakhov, Chatistravos, Karamperis, Tsiggaras, Maniotis, Gaitanidis, Warda, Canas
Forwards Prijovic, Karelis, Gkargkalatzidis, Tzovaras, Akpom, Jaba

Defender Leo Matos is suspended for the game, but Rzvan Lucescu has a full panel available, including former Arsenal striker Chuba Akpom.

PAOK XI: Paschalakis; Khacheridi, Varela, Tosca, Vieirinha; Wernbloom, Mauricio, El Kaddouri, Shakhov, Jaba; Pelkas. 

Position Chelsea squad
Goalkeepers Kepa, Caballero, Bulka
Defenders Rudiger, Alonso, Zappacosta, Cahill, Christensen, Azpilicueta
Midfielders Fabregas, Jorginho, Kante, Barkley, Pedro, Loftus-Cheek, Ampadu, Hudson-Odoi, Moses, Willian
Forwards Giroud, Morata

Sarri brought a 21-man travelling party to Greece for the game and Eden Hazard is among the notable absentees, along with Mateo Kovacic, David Luiz and Emerson.

Cesc Fabregas has been included and could potentially make a return to action.

Chelsea XI: Kepa; Zappacosta, Rudiger, Christensen, Alonso; Jorginho, Kante, Barkley; Willian, Pedro, Morata.

Betting & Match Odds

Chelsea are 13/20 favourites to win the game according to bet365, who deem PAOK to be a 5/1 bet to beat the Blues. A draw is available at 29/10.

Alvaro Morata is favourite to open the scoring at 7/2, followed by Olivier Giroud at 9/2.

Click here to see more offers for the Europa League games, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.

Match Preview

The reign of Sarri has begun in tremendous fashion, with Chelsea maintaining a 100 per cent record in their opening five matches of the season and the Italian coach is unsurprisingly well prepared for the game against PAOK.

"I have seen the four matches played by PAOK in the Champions League play-offs. My staff have seen the matches of the Greek championship. I think I know everything," Sarri told reporters ahead of the game.

"We want to play with our characteristics, to control the match with our ball possession, but I know [the game] will be difficult. They are a good team. They have won against Basel, Spartak Moscow, they drew against Benfica in Portugal. We have to do a very good match if we want to gain points."

The Blues will have to make do without their talisman Hazard, who has been allowed some extra time to recover following his hat-trick display against Cardiff City in the league, but Sarri has sufficient depth to cover for the Belgium international.

Willian and Pedro will be expected to fill the creative void left, but Sarri could also potentially use the game - and the group stage of the tournament in particular - as an arena in which to blood players such as Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ethan Ampadu, who have been making an impression.