Atletico lost 4-0 at Stamford Bridge and are at the bottom of the group.
“This match is decisive for us,” he told Sky Sports. “If we want to stay in the Champions League it is essential to get a win against Chelsea.
“That will not be easy but Atletico need to change and this could be the moment.
“The 4-0 defeat in London was very hard to take but nobody could doubt that the Blues were superior.
“With the help of our supporters it is possible to do well in the Champions League so the atmosphere will be key.”
Didier Drogba will return for the Blues for the game after completing a three-match European suspension.
“With Drogba or without Drogba this squad is sensational. We will have to play our best game of the season and give 150 per cent,” Rodriguez said.
“Our attacking line-up has a lot of quality and I am convinced that Kun (Sergio Aguero) and Diego (Forlan) will do well.
“To collect nine out of nine points is not easy but we need to start with a win against Chelsea.”
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Five English clubs will compete in the last sixteen of the Champions League for the first time ever as Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham face some difficult away matches.