Middlesbrough F.C. vs Chelsea F.C. preview: how to watch, kick-off time, team news, predicted lineups and ones to watch
Photo by Michael Regan via Getty images

Middlesbrough F.C. will welcome Chelsea F.C. to the Riverside Stadium on Saturday in the quarter-final of the FA cup in what looks to be a brilliant match.

Middlesbrough will go into the match off the back of a mixed back of results in the championship. They lost by four goals to one to Sheffield United before drawing with Milwall FC and on Tuesday they managed to win by two goals to nil against Birmingham City.

Meanwhile, Middlesbrough has also become specialists in knocking big premier league teams out of the FA cup. in the fourth round they were drawn away at Manchester United and managed to beat them in a penalty shootout then in the fifth round they had a home tie against Tottenham Hotspur and they won by one goal to nil.

Meanwhile, Chelsea will come into the match having won four straight matches on the bounce including a difficult match against Newcastle United and a round of 16 match against LOSC Lille in the champions league on Wednesday night.

Chelsea have had a more straightforward path through the FA cup although they have survived one or two scares along the way. In the fourth round, they were drawn at home to Plymouth Argyle and had to fight back after Plymouth got an early goal, in the fifth round they were drawn away at Luton Town and scraped through with a win thanks to a late Romelu Lukaku goal.

Team news

Middlesbrough manager Chris Wilder has has got only a few injuries with Andraz Sporar and  James Lea Siliki set to miss the match against Chelsea however he received a boost with the return of defender Anfernee Dijksteel from injury.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has several injury concerns. Ben Chilwell is still set to miss out as he continues his recovery, while Reece James and Callum Hudson-Odoi might be involved on Saturday if they pass the medical checks however Andreas Christensen looks set to miss out having come off after just 33 minutes against Lille on Wednesday.

Predicted lineups

Middlesbrough: Lumley, Dijksteel, Fry, McNair, Jones, Tavernier, Howson, Crooks, Taylor; Balogun, Connolly 

Chelsea: Kepa; Chalobah, Rudiger, Sarr; Ziyech, Jorginho, Kovacic, Alonso; Mount, Werner, Lukaku

Players to watch

Matt Crooks

Middlesbrough have had a steady season so far and are currently one of the teams fighting for a place in the play-offs to hopefully get into the premier league next season. Their main source of goals has been midfielder Matt Crooks.

So far this season Crooks has got nine goals and three assists meaning he is the clubs, top scorer. His ability to score goals and his work rate will be key for Middlesbrough on Saturday if they want to stop Chelsea's midfield from having an influence.

Romelu Lukaku

Chelsea have had a good season so far, despite being out of the title race in the premier league. They are currently third in the table and have a champions league quarter-final to look forward to. One of their key players is Romelu Lukaku.

Lukaku has had a mixed season he started off brilliantly then got injured and has failed to get into the starting 11 since his return primarily because of the performances of Kai Havertz, however, Havertz will likely be rested on Saturday and as a result, Lukaku will get an opportunity to rediscover his goal-scoring form.

Last time out

The last time these two faced each other was in 2017 in the premier league with Chelsea winning by three goals to nil.

Chelsea started the match quickly and had a chance barely two minutes in. Cesc Fabregas received the ball in midfield before sliding it through to Marcos Alonso whose shot from the left-hand side of the box was saved.

Chelsea continued to dominate and in the 23rd minute, they made the breakthrough. Fabregas again got on the ball in midfield before sliding it through to fellow Spaniard Diego Costa who without hesitating smashed the ball into the Middlesbrough goal.

Chelsea pushed and got their second of the match 11 minutes later. Cesar azpilicueta received the ball from a free kick on the right-hand side of the pitch before threading a through ball to Alonso whose shot from a tight angle managed to find the back of the net.

Chelsea managed to get a third goal in the 65th minute. Fabregas whipped a corner into a dangerous area and Nemanja Matic steamrolled past several defenders before lashing the ball into the Middlesbrough goal.

Middlesbrough finally created a decent chance in the 69th minute. Fabio received the ball in Chelsea's final third before passing it to Grant Leadbitter whose shot from outside the box that was heading into the bottom corner had to be saved by the Chelsea goalkeeper.

How to watch

Fans in the UK can watch the match on BBC One on Saturday afternoon.