Chelsea v Barcelona Betting Tips (Champions League) – 20th February 2018

Chelsea return to Champions League action this week, and they are about to pay the price for their second place finish in the group. The Blues slumped to finish behind Roma in their pool, leaving them facing La Liga leaders Barcelona in the last 16.

Given how the Catalans are very much on the up domestically – despite the sale of Neymar – the Blues are the outsiders in this one. Can Antonio Conte inspire his side to a victory over another Spanish side, or will they drop out of Europe at the first knockout round as they did in the 2015/16 season?

The bookies clearly see a victory for Barcelona, not just overall but in this first leg. Losing the opening clash would be a huge setback for the Premier League champions, with a trip to the Nou Camp coming up in three weeks’ time. Chelsea crashed out to PSG in 2016 when they were last in the competition, during their last dismal season following a title win. While things haven’t been quite as tough this time around, crashing out of Europe at this stage would be a setback which Antonio Conte can’t really afford at this stage.

Team News: How Will Blues Deal With Catalans?

Conte made his customary changes in their FA Cup clash on Friday night, but don’t expect anyone to be held back for this clash. Marcos Alonso should be fit again to take up his place on the left side of defence, while Victor Moses will be on the opposite wing. Olivier Giroud is available for selection despite playing a role in Arsenal’s Europa League campaign, but he’s not likely to start ahead of Alvaro Morata. The Spaniard showed his worth in the trip to Atletico Madrid earlier this season, and there’s hope that he can provide a similar impact in this game.

Barcelona may be known for the 4-3-3 which Pep Guardiola utilised to take them to incredible levels, but things have been different this season. The loss of Neymar, and the injury to his replacement – Ousmane Dembele – means Barca are no longer using their front three. Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez are their double act up front, with a four man midfield behind them. While a 4-4-2 isn’t what you’d usually expect from Barca, but the approach does seem to be working for them. Having moved seven points clear at the top of the table in Spain, it’s clearly an effective approach.

Barcelona Form

It’s hard to match Barca’s form this season, given that they’ve won 18 of their 23 league games, drawing the rest. It’s been too much for European champions Real Madrid to handle, who are 17 points behind the Catalans in the table. They’ve won 75% of their away trips this season, so can they take that form into this clash with the Premier League side?

The visitors have built their brilliant form on a strong defensive record, as they’ve conceded just 0.48 goals per game in the league this term. They’ve managed to keep a clean sheet in 61% of their outings in La Liga, which should worry a Chelsea side who have been hit and miss up front this season. However, the Catalans have drawn both trips to sides in the top three in Spain, so there’s a chance that they’ll struggle in another big game this week.

Chelsea v Barcelona Head to Head

The Blues have a fantastic record against Barcelona of late, having gone seven games unbeaten against the Catalans. That includes the last two meetings – the incredible double header in the 2012 semi-finals of this competition, including an incredible strike from Ramires and the late Fernando Torres strike. Can the Premier League side continue that run this week?

  • Barcelona 2-2 Chelsea, Apr 2012
  • Chelsea 1-0 Barcelona, Apr 2012
  • Chelsea 1-1 Barcelona, May 2009
  • Barcelona 0-0 Chelsea, Apr 2009
  • Barcelona 2-2 Chelsea, Oct 2006

Betting Tips

  • Under 2.5 Goals – 19/20 with Betfair
  • 0-0 Draw – 10/1 with Coral

Chelsea are 3/1 outsiders with Betfred heading into this game, despite their impressive record against the Catalans of late. Meanwhile, the visitors have been made favourites at evens with Ladbrokes, while you can back the draw at 13/5 with BetVictor here. It does seem like the recent record between the two sides is being largely ignored, and there’s also a case to say that Barca’s results in this competition are being ignored too. They’ve not been a side who have won at a canter in their recent away trips in Europe, so could they struggle at Stamford Bridge?

Barca have slipped up at top sides in Spain, and they come into this game with a mixed record in Europe on the road. The last few seasons have seen them toil in trips to all kinds of sides. They’ve managed just three wins in their last nine away in this competition, including just one victory in five. They lost to nil away to PSG and Juventus last season, before seeing a single goal scored across the last three European ties. An own goal gave them a 1-0 win at Sporting, while they drew 0-0 at Olympiakos and Juventus in the group. That doesn’t bode well for this clash.

With Chelsea having a mixed record going forward this term, we can’t see this being a high scoring game. We’re backing under 2.5 goals in this clash, which looks like good value at 19/20 with Betfair. Given how the Blues are unbeaten of late against the Catalans, having drawn most of those clashes we expect this one to finish up level too. While the draw seems like good value in this clash, we’re backing a goalless draw in this one, despite many predicting goals. A 0-0 draw is well priced at 10/1 with Coral.

Chelsea v Hull Betting Tips (FA Cup) – 16th February 2018

Chelsea are back in FA Cup action on Friday night, as Championship side Hull City head to Stamford Bridge. The Premier League champions are obviously heavy favourites to progress, given that they’re meeting a struggling second tier outfit in this clash.

While there have been problems surrounding the Blues in recent weeks, it’s hard to see a situation whereby they end up exiting the cup this weekend. After all, they should have far too much for the Tigers, even taking in heavy rotation into account. With the hosts aiming to go one better than last year in this competition, the stage does seem set for them to book a place in the quarter-finals.

Hull are hoping to lift the gloom after a tough 18 months by going on a cup run. The Tigers were finalists in this competition back in 2014, but can they go that far again? Having slumped in the Championship and after drawing the Premier League champions, you would imagine that the Tigers are cursing their luck. Having seen Chelsea just beat West Brom 3-0, you have to wonder how they’ll get on when they meet a poor side from the Championship this weekend.

Team News: Changes Likely Ahead of Catalan Visit

Antonio Conte doesn’t have a lengthy injury list this weekend, with Marcos Alonso and Ross Barkley both doubts. The Italian could have easily started without the pair anyway. With Barcelona heading for the Bridge in midweek, we expect that Conte will be looking to make changes for this clash. He’s likely to rest most of the back five, while Thibaut Courtois will sit out. Danny Drinkwater could make a start in midfield, while Willian and Pedro are the frontrunners to start behind Olivier Giroud this weekend, as Eden Hazard and Alvaro Morata are held back for the clash with the Catalans.

Sadly, Hull man Ryan Mason retired in the lead-up to this game. It’s over a year ago that he fractured his skull at the Bridge in an aerial battle with Gary Cahill, and medical advice has told him not to return to the game. On top of that, the visitors have some selection issues to concern themselves with, as they have three Chelsea loanees. Ola Aina, Fikayo Tomori and Michael Hector are all unavailable for this game, so they all sit out. Without forward Abel Hernandez, the Tigers are significantly weakened going into this clash.

Hull Form

The Tigers have only just dropped down to the second tier, but they are battling against relegation to League One. They’ve found themselves in the relegation mix in recent months, having climbed out with a 2-0 win last weekend. They’ve won just six games in the Championship this term, suffering 14 defeats in 31 matches. Having scored less than a goal per game on the road in the league this term, which doesn’t bode well for a clash with Premier League opposition.

Hull have been particularly poor on the road this season, having lost nine of their 16 away trips. The Tigers have managed just two away wins in the Championship, and the highest placed team they’ve beaten on the road is 17th placed Nottingham Forest. In 12 meetings with the top nine sides, they’ve won none, losing nine. While victories against Blackburn Rovers and Nottingham Forest have taken them in to the Fifth Round of the FA Cup, the Tigers are likely to struggle when they meet the Premier League champions.

Chelsea v Hull Head to Head

Chelsea come into this clash having won their last six clashes with Hull. They won to nil home and away to the Tigers last term, as the two sides went in very different directions. The first victory last term – a 2-0 win at Hull – was the first time Conte started out with a back three as Chelsea boss. That win was a shaky one, but it kicked off the winning run which fired the Blues towards last season’s Premier League title.

  • Chelsea 2-0 Hull, Jan 2017
  • Hull 0-2 Chelsea, Oct 2016
  • Hull 2-3 Chelsea, Mar 2015
  • Chelsea 2-0 Hull, Dec 2014
  • Hull 0-2 Chelsea, Jan 2014

Betting Tips

  • Chelsea half-time/full-time – 3/4 with Ladbrokes
  • Chelsea to win 2-0 – 5/1 with BetVictor

The Blues are priced at 1/5 with Betfred to win this game, while they’re 1/14 with Betfair to qualify for the quarter-finals. The draw can be backed at 6/1 with Betfair in this game, while you can back Hull at 16/1 with Coral. The Premier League side are clear favourites for this clash, but can they live up to that favourites tag? We’ve had a look around at the betting on this one, as we look to find a couple of alternative picks with some better value.

While the Blues are likely to make changes, they’re set to include some big money signings in the mix. The likes of Willian, Pedro and Giroud should all make enough of an impact to leave key names out, as Conte looks to balance his side’s chances across multiple competitions. Of course, the Tigers are more significantly weakened than Chelsea – even with rotation taken into account. We struggle to see how the Championship side get anything out of this game given the gulf in class between them.

We’re backing Chelsea to take control of this tie early on, as we’re tipping them to be ahead at the end of each half. They seem like great value at 3/4 with Ladbrokes on the half-time/full-time market, which is our first tip. We’re also backing a comfortable 2-0 win for the Blues, given their excellent winning run against the Tigers. They won both meetings last season 2-0, while the last three encounters at Stamford Bridge have seen the Blues win 2-0, so we’re backing a repeat at 5/1 with BetVictor.

Arsenal v Chelsea Betting Tips (Premier League) – 3rd January 2018

Chelsea face a huge test of their top four credentials when they travel to Arsenal on Wednesday night. The Blues take on the Gunners in a big clash in the race for the Champions League, with the champions aiming to push for a top two finish this term, with the title already a highly unrealistic target given Man City’s dominance. However, Chelsea could still be sucked into a fight for fourth given how many top sides are playing well and in contention for the top four.

There’s going to be huge pressure on matches like this from now until the end of the campaign. However, that’s going to be cranked up by the number of meetings these two are set to have. They were regular opponents in 2017, and now they start 2018 with three encounters in January. Let’s just hope they don’t end up paired together in the FA Cup Fourth Round. The Gunners haven’t always been the easiest opponents for Antonio Conte since he took over, this trip should remind the Italian of Chelsea’s big turning point on their way to the title last term.

Team News: Conte Likely to Stick With Packed Midfield

While this is the ground where Antonio Conte first switched Chelsea to the 3-4-3 system which won the title, they aren’t expected to use that formation here. They’re likely to stick with a 3-5-2 system that the Italian has gone to in big games of late. He’s switched to that set up in recent matches to fit three central midfielders into the side. Given how Arsenal pack the midfield and look to pass it around, that could be a crucial factor for the champions. They’re expected to have most of the squad available for this trip, although David Luiz will probably sit out once again.

The Gunners have lost Olivier Giroud, which is a big blow as he’s a great option from the bench. Santi Cazorla remains a long term absentee for Arsenal, while Aaron Ramsey could also sit out of this big game. The hosts have also drifted towards a 4-2-3-1 system in recent weeks, having started the year with a 3-4-3 set-up after Chelsea blazed a trail with it. The switch back seems to be working quite well for the Blues, and they’re likely to go with a back four, as that’s what they started with at home to Liverpool in their last big game.

Arsenal Form

Arsenal are have a solid season so far, but they’ve not definitively shown that they’re capable of returning to the Champions League through the top four this term. They’ve possibly got a better chance of pushing for the Europa League as Manchester United did, with the Gunners struggling for consistency in the top flight.

Their main issues are on the road, having won just three of their away trips this season. That isn’t good enough for a side who want to make the top four, but that form won’t have much of a bearing on this clash. The Gunners are much better at home, having won eight and drawn one of their 10 matches here, but the manner of their loss to Man United has to raise questions.

Arsenal v Chelsea Head to Head

These two sides are probably sick of each other at this point, before they play three times in the next month. They are fresh from four competitive clashes in 2017, plus a summer friendly meeting which the Blues won 3-0. The pair drew 1-1 at Wembley in the Community Shield this term and they had a goalless draw at Stamford Bridge, which their frequent meetings could be partly responsible for.

Having clashed so often, it could just be that these two have little new to pull out of the hat to edge a game this big. Of course, the two league meetings were decisive last term, with Arsenal’s 3-0 win at home becoming the springboard for the Blues’ title success. Their turnaround was clear in their 3-1 win in the return fixture.

  • Chelsea 0-0 Arsenal, Sep 2017
  • Arsenal 1-1 Chelsea, Aug 2017
  • Arsenal 2-1 Chelsea, May 2017
  • Chelsea 3-1 Chelsea, Feb 2017
  • Arsenal 3-0 Chelsea, Sep 2016

Betting Tips

  • Under 2.5 Goals – 13/10 with Betfair
  • 1-1 Draw – 13/2 with Betfred

The bookmakers are struggling to pick a favourite between these two, with Arsenal slightly ahead at 29/20 with BetVictor. Chelsea can be backed at 7/4 with Coral, while the draw here is at 5/2 with Ladbrokes. This is clearly going to be a close affair, but just how will this one play out? It’s hard to see Chelsea getting involved in the kind of end to end affair that the Gunners have enjoyed of late. Will they end up opening up here, or will this clash be more like their meeting at Stamford Bridge earlier this season?

With six goals across their last five in the league, the Blues aren’t exactly clinical at the moment. They’ve seemingly slowed down going forward, and that form could be a worrying sign if it lasts much longer. One big factor is the importance of Eden Hazard. Half of those six came in a win at Huddersfield, the only match in which he was allowed to play well. Elsewhere teams have been marking the Belgian out of the game for the most part, and as a result we’re backing under 2.5 goals here based on the job Arsenal did in their trip to the Bridge this term.

Given the number of meetings between them, and the back to back draws in their meetings this season, we can see this one finishing level. The Gunners should be a little more conservative in this match than they were against Liverpool, so we’re expecting a close run game. While the draw is well priced at 5/2 with Ladbrokes, we’re going for a 1-1 correct score here at 13/2 with Betfred.

Chelsea v Stoke Betting Tips (Premier League) – 30th December 2017

Chelsea are back in action on Saturday, with a busy few days ahead. This clash comes just before a midweek trip to Arsenal, and then their FA Cup Third Round tie the following weekend. That wraps up a busy Christmas schedule, one which could make or break their season. Antonio Conte will want his side strengthening their place inside the top three, while they’ll have an eye on second with United faltering. While Man City are set to run away with the title, the Blues could force their way into second place in their title defence.

This season is playing out very differently for the Blues this time around, as they were the runaway leaders at Christmas last year. However, Conte’s side are now competing across multiple fronts, while at this stage last season they only had the league and FA Cup to focus on. With four competitions to compete in, squad rotation is going to be a big part of the next couple of months, so we should see a changed Chelsea side heading out at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

Team News: Conte Expected to Rotate to Cope with Christmas Congestion

The Blues come in to this one on the back of a solid victory over Brighton, which saw a number of changes. They’ve handled their squad well across the Christmas schedule so far, and we expect that to be the case when Stoke roll in to town this weekend. Gary Cahill got a break last time out, and we expect him to return to the side for this one. The 3-5-2 formation used against Brighton should remain, with Danny Drinkwater likely to feature in a three-man midfield. The key for Conte will be keeping things fresh, especially with a big test to come at the Emirates during the week.

On-loan Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma is a big miss for the Potters, his presence in their defence is a pretty big one, as most Blues’ fans will know. He’s among the defensive absentees for the Potters, with Erik Pieters a doubt, and Bruno Martins Indi is another who is likely to sit out here. Up against Chelsea that could be crucial, with the Blues possessing some impressive attacking talents. A defensive reshuffle is likely to be on the cards for Mark Hughes, which isn’t ideal as they try to stave off the threat of relegation.

Stoke Form

Stoke are having far from a vintage year, and they’ve spent most of the campaign worrying about relegation. The Potters were rumoured to be considering Hughes’ position not too long ago, with a 2-1 win over West Brom seemingly keeping him in place over Christmas. The club still aren’t out of danger, and they remain one of the worst organised sides in the top flight.

Stoke have had particular problems on the road this season, claiming just a single victory on their travels. They’ve lost 60% of their away trips this term, averaging just 0.6 points per game on the road. That’s got to be a concern ahead of this game away to Chelsea, a side who have one of the strongest home records in the top flight.

Chelsea v Stoke Head to Head

Chelsea are in a good run of form against Stoke, as they won home and away against the Potters last season. They followed that up by pulling off one of their most impressive results this season against Hughes and his team, winning 4-0 at the bet365 Stadium back in September this season. While that sparked the possibility of a title charge, the Blues simply haven’t hit those heights regularly. Will they be able to return to that impressive form with a win here?

  • Stoke 0-4 Chelsea, Sept 2017
  • Stoke 1-2 Chelsea, Mar 2017
  • Chelsea 4-2 Stoke, Dec 2016
  • Chelsea 1-1 Stoke, Mar 2016
  • Stoke 1-0 Chelsea, Nov 2015

Betting Tips

  • Chelsea to win to nil – 4/5 with BetVictor
  • Chelsea -3 handicap – 4/1 with Betfair

The Blues come in to this game as heavy favourites to claim all three points against the Potters. Following their comprehensive victory in the last meeting, the champions have been priced at just 1/6 with Coral for the victory, while the visitors have drifted out to 20/1 with Ladbrokes. You can back the draw at 6/1 with Betfred in this game, but little about the form of these two suggests that this game will be anything but a straightforward victory for the home side. With Alvaro Morata backed in to 7/12 with Coral to score in the 90 minutes, it’s fair to expect a few goals in this one too.

Stoke head to a Chelsea side who are in solid form at home, having won 70% of their home matches this term. They’ve won their last six here in the league, while four of their last five victories at the Bridge in the Premier League have come to nil. Stoke don’t exactly have a lot of attacking talent going forward, and the Blues have already kept a clean sheet in the away meeting this term. We expect this to be a comfortable victory for the champions, and we think a win to nil is worth backing in this one, and it is priced at 4/5 with BetVictor.

The Blues recorded a thumping win over Stoke earlier this term, and that’s nothing new for the Potters. Not only did they ship four goals in their trip here last season, but they’ve already suffered heavy losses against some of the league’s top teams. The Potters were hit for seven in their game at the Etihad against leaders City, while they lost 5-1 against Tottenham at Wembley recently. With that in mind, we think the Blues’ attack could click against this weakened Stoke defence, one which has lost by four goals on three occasions already this term. We’re backing the Blues with a -3 handicap here at a huge 4/1 with Betfair.

West Brom v Chelsea Betting Tips (Premier League) – 18th November 2017

On Saturday Conte takes his Blues’ side back to the ground where they won the Premier League title just six months ago. Plenty has changed for the Blues since that dramatic victory at the Hawthorns, which wrapped up a fantastic debut season in English football for the Italian manager. Things aren’t going quite as well this time around, as they trail leaders Manchester City, with United and Tottenham between them and top spot. Retaining the title is going to be a tall order for the Blues, and it’ll be even more difficult if they can’t at least repeat their 1-0 victory here in May.

The international break came at the worst time for Chelsea, as there’s been a two week break between their win over United and this clash with West Brom. That result was a huge boost for Conte and his side, before they all departed with their national sides. Can they pick up where they left off when they travel to the Hawthorns on Saturday? The champions need to build on that last victory, especially with the race for the Champions League spots heating up.

Team News: Can Luiz Make a Return?

Antonio Conte’s biggest move last time out was to drop David Luiz from the side, claiming after that he’d finally picked his first choice trio in central defence. He claimed it was a tactical move, but reports of a clash between the manager and the Brazilian defender suggests he’s likely to miss out here. The Blues boss did welcome back N’Golo Kante for the United game, which saw him switch to a 3-5-2 formation. He’s likely to return to the 3-4-3 set-up for this weekend’s match, which should see Pedro step back into the team. Danny Drinkwater – who turned down an England call up due to fitness concerns – isn’t likely to make the starting line-up here.

James Morrison and Craig Dawson are both missing out for the Baggies ahead of this clash. Tony Pulis may make big changes as he desperately tries to end their awful slump in form, which makes it hard to call his starting line-up this weekend. However, he has been utilising a three-man defence of late, and we expect the Welshman to stick with that approach in order to match up with Conte’s tactics. They have named Jay Rodriguez and Salomon Rondon up front in recent weeks, and they should lead the way in a 3-5-2 formation.

West Brom Form

The Baggies are going through a real rough patch ahead of the visit of the champions. They’ve hit nine matches without a win, after taking six points from their opening two Premier League matches of the season. That’s a pretty big tail off, and it’s left many fans calling for Pulis to get the sack. When you play results football and fail to get results, you can’t really expect much else.

A 1-0 loss to Huddersfield last time out has left them a point above the drop zone, leaving West Brom in trouble. The Baggies have to be concerned by their recent form, especially losing out to newly promoted sides. Having managed to win one and lose 13 of their last 16 meetings with the top seven, it’s difficult to hold out much hope for the hosts ahead of this clash.

West Brom v Chelsea Head to Head

It’s hard to not think about Chelsea’s latest title triumph when you consider their recent encounters with the Baggies. The Blues picked up two 1-0 wins over West Brom last term, both vital in their push for the trophy. The first came via a late Diego Costa winner, and the second was an even more dramatic victory via Michy Batshuayi’s title winning goal.

  • West Brom 0-1 Chelsea, May 2017
  • Chelsea 1-0 West Brom, Dec 2016
  • Chelsea 2-2 West Brom, Jan 2016
  • West Brom 2-3 Chelsea, Aug 2015
  • West Brom 3-0 Chelsea, May 2015

Betting Tips

  • Morata to score any time – evens with BetVictor
  • Chelsea to win 1-0 – 13/2 with Bet365

Chelsea come into this clash as 4/7 favourites with Coral to claim the three points. The Baggies may have failed to win any of their last nine league outings, but they can be backed at 5/1 with Betfred to win on Saturday. Meanwhile, the draw is priced up at 27/10 with Ladbrokes, which might tempt some.

The champions aren’t bad value considering the form of these two going in, but we believe you can find some better value on this game. The champions are worth backing for the points, but having looked at the stats and the form of each we believe we have some better options when it comes to pro-Chelsea bets on Saturday.

One thing that has to worry Tony Pulis is that his side just aren’t doing the things they tend to specialise in. The Baggies are a side who keep clean sheets, are hard to beat and tend to dominate in the air. Usually that wouldn’t be a good match for Blues’ forward Alvaro Morata, but this season is a different story.

This season West Brom have been poor at the back, conceding their fair share of headers. That’s not a huge surprise, given that no team has won fewer aerial duels than the Baggies this term. Morata has scored the majority of his goals in the air, so we’re backing him to score any time against West Brom. He’s priced at evens with BetVictor to score any time on Saturday.

West Brom come into this game having lost their last three games by a single goal. Having gone down 1-0 home and away to Chelsea last season, we can see the Baggies making things difficult for the Blues here. We’re backing another 1-0 win for the champions at the Hawthorns, which is great value at 13/2 with Bet365.

Tottenham vs Chelsea Betting Tips (Premier League) – 20th August 2017

Chelsea started their season with an awful home defeat to Burnley, leaving the champions in trouble ahead of their clash with Tottenham. The Blues were the first defending champion in the Premier League to concede three on the opening day, a worrying snapshot of their awful defending. The last thing they need after losing to one of the relegation favourites is a clash against last season’s runners-up. With the game taking place at Wembley, will that be the saving grace for Antonio Conte and his threadbare squad?

This could well be a third loss at Wembley across the Blues’ last four competitive games in all competitions. Having lost twice to one London rival, Arsenal, going down to Tottenham too is unthinkable for most fans. However, Mauricio Pochettino’s men started the season with a solid win at Newcastle, which suggests they’re ready for the new campaign despite their lack of additions to their squad. If only Chelsea could say the same, having been left short by the selling policy of the Stamford Bridge hierarchy this summer.

Team News: Suspensions leave Conte short with his selection

Chelsea come into this game with just one of their three scorers from their mast meeting with Spurs. While Willian is likely to make an appearance, Eden Hazard is injured and Nemanja Matic is now at Manchester United. The Blues are without the suspended Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas, meaning Cesar Azpilicueta is set to take the armband. After barely managing to field a team on Saturday, those two absences leave Antonio Conte with a tough task preparing a side to face Spurs. A formation change has been mooted, simply because they lack numbers to fill the regular 3-4-3.

Tottenham are set to miss Danny Rose once again, with the full-back still out injured. Given his comments to the press, he’d probably be fighting for a starting place even if he was fit. Aside from that Spurs should be at full strength, with Harry Kane starting up front. However, the forward is still searching for his first career goal in August, can he find that on Sunday?

Tottenham Form

Tottenham were able to make a comfortable start to the new season, winning 2-0 at newly promoted Newcastle. Spurs weren’t completely convincing until Jonjo Shevley received a red card, which changed the game and allowed them to take control. However, that win has likely built up confidence in the Tottenham squad going in to this game, which would have been needed after the summer they have had. While the part line has been to boast about the strength of the team, cracks have begun to appear.

Danny Rose’s decision to come out and blast the club’s transfer policy and wage limit means things weren’t rosy at the club last week. Pochettino even said that his side have fallen behind the rest of the top six after failing to sign anyone. While the Blues are having problems with regards to transfers, this is the same side which lost to Chelsea twice last season. Can they turn that around at Wembley, or will their awful run of form at this ground hurt Spurs?

Tottenham vs Chelsea Head to Head

The last clash between these two sides came at Wembley, as the Blues came from behind to win 4-2 in an FA Cup semi-final. That has set the scene for this game, with Spurs set to kick off their Premier League campaign in their temporary home. That makes this another landmark meeting between these two rivals, after a strong of high profile games. Before that cup semi-final Spurs ended Chelsea’s 13 game winning run, a streak which contained a 2-1 win over Spurs in November. The Blues stopped Spurs from winning the title in May last year, so these clashes have been quite high profile of late.

  • Chelsea 4-2 Tottenham, Apr 2017
  • Tottenham 2-0 Chelsea, Jan 2017
  • Chelsea 2-1 Tottenham, Nov 2016
  • Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham, May 2016
  • Tottenham 0-0 Chelsea, Nov 2015

Betting Tips

  • Both Teams to Score – 8/11 with Betfred
  • Tottenham to win – 21/20 with Sky Bet

Coming into this game, Tottenham have been priced up as 21/20 favourites with Sky Bet, with clear distance between them and the Blues. The champions can be backed at 5/2 with BetVictor, while the draw is available at 12/5 with Bet365. Unfortunately we have to side with Spurs on this one, because they seem to represent value in this match. However, we should get a pretty entertaining game when these two meet.

With Chelsea’s issues at the back, we think a Spurs goal is pretty much nailed on. They’re facing a makeshift back line which is weaker than the one which conceded three at home to Burnley. However, the Blues fought back in that game and got on the scoresheet, with Alvaro Morata looking sharp. There’s a chance that Conte pairs him with Michy Batshuayi in the absence of Eden Hazard and Pedro, so we expect the champions to score here. Spurs won’t have enough to cover all the space behind their defence at Wembley, and Morata proved that he can run in behind and exploit that with his weekend display. We’re backing both teams to score in this clash at 8/11 with Betfred.

However, the Blues have too many problems with their selection to get a result here. There are too many similarities to 2015 for us here, in which Chelsea defended their title, lost to Arsenal in the Community Shield and then slipped up at home to Swansea in their opener. They followed that up by heading to the previous runners-up, Man City, in which they were heavily beaten. We think that history will repeat itself once again, and Spurs will win this clash. Given their price of 21/20 with Sky Bet, it’s hard to say they aren’t well priced with everything going on right now.

Chelsea vs Burnley Betting Tips (Premier League) – 12th August 2017

Can Chelsea kick off their title defence with a victory over Burnley this weekend? Antonio Conte’s side have had an odd summer, despite adding a few big money signings. However, those players have been bought in to replace some big name departures, leaving the squad looking a little thin ahead of a tilt at four competitions. There’s more than a few similarities between this term and the 2015/16 season, when Jose Mourinho’s side fell apart after a lax summer. However, Conte is aware of that risk and the Italian is determined to avoid a similar fate.

Hosting Burnley is a relatively straightforward way to start the season, but we did say the same about Swansea two years ago. Could Burnley pull off one of the biggest shocks in their history? With survival being the goal for the Clarets once again, this game isn’t a real test for them in the relegation battle. However, they could do without a demoralising opening day loss to the champions.

Team News: Conte lacking options following Wembley loss

Chelsea were down to the bare bones for their clash with Arsenal in the Community Shield. Eden Hazard and Tiemoue Bakayoko remain out, while Diego Costa is still an outcast. Victor Moses was allowed to play in the curtain raiser because it was classified as a friendly, but he’s suspended here. That’s going to lead to a reshuffled backline, with Cesar Azpilicueta moving to right-wing back and Antonio Rudiger stepping into the back three.

Outside of that, Conte doesn’t have the room to make changes. He’d probably like more competition amongst his players, but right now he has a side which picks itself. That was a bonus last season, but it’s a big issue this time around.

Burnley boss Sean Dyche should keep the faith with the side that helped them to safety last season. That was a huge achievement for the club, and they’ve made a few understated signings after securing another year of Premier League TV revenue. They may introduce a few of their new signings to their side here, but we don’t expect them to be too different from the side which hosted the Blues at Turf Moor earlier this year. One doubt for the Clarets is Andre Gray, who is being linked with a big money move away from the club, possibly to high-spending Championship side Wolves.

Burnley Form

Sean Dyche has made some odd signings this summer, bringing in established Premier League names like Phil Bardsley and Jon Walters. He’s brought former Blue Jack Cork to Turf Moor, which seems like a solid signing. However, is that enough to keep them in the top flight? And can it help them pull off a result away to the champions this weekend?

Burnley’s survival last season was largely down to their excellent home form, their away results were awful. They were beaten in almost every away trip, though they just about got their act together late in the season. However, the pressure was off them by then, as their home results got them over the line. The worrying thing for Dyche is that they were safe with some time to spare last season, and then they limped to the finish line. Sides who do that usually have a tough start, and that’s something that the Clarets simply can’t afford.

Chelsea vs Burnley Head to Head

Given that this is the first time Burnley have kicked off a second consecutive Premier League season, meetings between the pair aren’t that regular. The Blues have been comfortable winners in most of their clashes, although the Clarets did put in a strong showing during their meeting at Turf Moor back in February. Will Conte’s side find this game as tough after their difficult summer?

  • Burnley 1-1 Chelsea, Feb 2017
  • Chelsea 3-0 Burnley, Aug 2016
  • Chelsea 1-1 Burnley, Feb 2015
  • Burnley 1-3 Chelsea, Aug 2014
  • Chelsea 3-0 Burnley, Aug 2009

Betting Tips

  • Chelsea to win and both teams to score – 21/10 with Ladbrokes
  • Cesc Fabregas to score any time – 21/10 with Coral

Chelsea may not be having the best of times lately, but they’re still massive favourites to see off the Clarets at home. Sky Bet have priced them up at 1/4 for the victory at home, and we struggle to see the Blues failing to win this opening game. They should be able to get around the Clarets, but we don’t think it’s going to be an easy match. There could be a few goals in this one, and not all for the hosts. With a reorganised back line taking the pitch here, could the Blues slip up at the back?

While the 3-4-3 blew teams away last season, there were signs that it was being slightly figured out as they went along towards the end. Eight of the Blues’ last 10 home matches saw them concede, and they’re at risk of adding to that poor run here. Burnley were struggling for goals on the road in the first half of last season, but once they got started they were tough to stop. They scored in 10 of their last 12 matches on the road, but they still didn’t win too many of those. We see them scoring again, but like we said a Chelsea win seems inevitable. We’re backing a home win and BTTS at 21/10 with Ladbrokes.

Chelsea are missing most of their key goalscorers up front, so they’ll need someone to step up in this clash. Alvaro Morata doesn’t look match fit, and Michy Batshuayi is still unproven in the Premier League. Cesc Fabregas is going to be the big winner from this injury crisis, as he’s slotting into central midfield. He is going to need to use all his experience to help the team through the opening weeks, and we can see him providing a goal. He’s priced at 21/10 with Coral to score any time, which we think is worth backing.

Everton v Chelsea Betting Tips (Premier League) – 30th April 2017

After seeing off Southampton on Tuesday night, the Blues head to Merseyside on Sunday as they continue their Premier League title push. The Blues made it back to back 4-2 wins after beating the Saints, which was another step towards sealing the title. However, they’re facing possibly the toughest of their remaining games, as they make their penultimate away trip of the league season. Could former Blue Romelu Lukaku cause problems here, and get in the way of the leaders’ title push? With a £100 million price tag and rumours linking him with a return to Stamford Bridge, he’ll surly be out to impress.

Ronald Koeman had his Everton side on the verge of the Champions League fight, but they seem good for a top seven place at least. They could yet move into the top six in the final stages of the campaign, repeating the finish that the Dutchman achieved with Southampton last term. Of course, the Toffees will still remember the thumping defeat they suffered in their trip to west London earlier this season. Just how will that loss play on their minds ahead of a crucial game for both sides?

Team News: Eight goals in a week gives Conte a headache

It’s been a brilliant week for the Blues ahead of this game, booking a FA Cup final spot and claiming another Premier League win. Eight goals have propelled the league leaders towards the double, but it’s left Antonio Conte with some questions to answer. Having started four players in the two attacking midfield spots, he now has to decide who has earned a place. After how Eden Hazard and Cesc Fabregas played together, they could keep their place in the side.

With Diego Costa scoring again we can’t see too many changes from the side which beat Southampton, although that’s quite harsh on Pedro and Willian, who were both very effective at Wembley last weekend. With no injury worries, Conte has plenty of room to make changes, something the opposition manager wishes he had.

Everton have a considerable injury list ahead of this clash, with Irish duo Seamus Coleman and James McCarthy still out. Ramiro Funes Mori and Yannick Bolasie both miss out this weekend, while Aaron Lennon is another who is set for the sidelines. That leaves Koeman with limited options, but they’re expected to continue with their usual 4-3-3 set up, which looks to involve Lukaku as much as possible.

That’s a distinct change from Chelsea’s former policy for the Belgian, who will be looking to show his former side exactly what they’ve missed out on this weekend. Both he and Ross Barkley are set to start in attack, with both players making noises about potential moves to Champions League sides in the summer.

Everton Form

Everton have been strong in the Premier League overall, they’re certainly much improved from their dismal campaign under Roberto Martinez. The Toffees are on course for European football, which was probably the minimum aim as their new owner is promising to take the club to new heights. They were in the mix for the Champions League spots, which would certainly have been a new height for the club, but recent form has seen them fall away from the top four.

The Toffees have managed just two wins in their last five, which has left them six points shy of fourth, despite having played two more games than the team around them. However, they are impressive at Goodison Park, having won their last six outings at their own ground. Can that run continue when Chelsea come to town?

Everton v Chelsea Head to Head

Chelsea were in the midst of a poor run against Everton, but their brilliant form in late 2016 brought that to an end in impressive style. A 5-0 win for the Blues followed up three meetings without a win. Can Conte guide his side to another success over the Toffees on Sunday? After two defeats at Goodison last season, each under a different manager, the Italian has his work cut out.

  • Chelsea 5-0 Everton, Nov 2016
  • Everton 2-0 Chelsea, Mar 2016
  • Chelsea 3-3 Everton, Jan 2016
  • Everton 3-1 Chelsea, Sept 2015
  • Chelsea 1-0 Everton, Feb 2015

Betting Tips

  • Both teams to score – 7/10 with Bet365
  • Eden Hazard to score – 29/20 with BetVictor

Chelsea come into this game priced as favourites, but they’re still 21/20 with Betfred to secure the points. Meanwhile, the draw is priced at 5/2 with Sky Bet while Everton are 12/5 with Ladbrokes to claim a victory. There’s certainly value in backing the leaders to take the win, but as this is the toughest match in the run-in, we’ve looked elsewhere for our betting tips on this clash. The Toffees are strong opposition at home, as shown in recent meetings with the Blues, and we don’t expect things to be anywhere near as easy as that 5-0 win at Stamford Bridge earlier this season.

After conceding another two goals on Tuesday night, the Blues’ defensive woes continue to bug them. With a trip to Everton this weekend, we can’t see their run getting any better. As we mentioned, Everton have six straight home victories ahead of this meeting. The leaders have now conceded in 11 straight league games, which is an awful run for a side of their stature. We can’t see things getting better any time soon, so we’re backing both teams to score at 7/10 with Bet365.

Our final tip for this game is another goal from Eden Hazard. We’re expecting Chelsea to grab a goal on Merseyside, and the Belgian’s form should see him cause problems. Having opened the scoring against Southampton, after hitting a vital third goal against Tottenham, we Hazard will play a key role this weekend. After all, he has scored the title winning goal in the last two seasons, so he’s coming into form at the right time. The winger is 29/20 with BetVictor to score any time on Sunday.

Chelsea v Southampton Betting Tips (Premier League) – 25th April 2017

Chelsea are back in action pretty quickly following their enthralling FA Cup win over Spurs. They face Southampton on Tuesday night as they return to their Premier League title charge. While Antonio Conte has suggested that hands Spurs an advantage in the title race, any prospective Champions League side should be able to handle a Saturday then Tuesday schedule, especially given how light the Blues’ fixture list has been this term compared to others. While the Italian boss is hoping his mind games switch the pressure on to a reeling Tottenham side, he won’t accept any excuses for a slip up this week.

The Blues will want to claim the first of the five wins they need when they host Southampton. They can potentially go seven points clear of Spurs with a win, with their nearest rivals facing a tough trip to Crystal Palace. This could prove to be a great week for Conte’s side, but they need to avoid another slip up at home to Southampton. The Saints have been impressive at this ground since returning to the top flight, which makes this a tough fixture to play 72 hours after a crunch match at Wembley.

Team News: Changes likely after shock Conte selection

Following Sunday’s incredible rotation from Conte, it’s hard to know what to expect here. We still aren’t fully sure if Diego Costa and Eden Hazard were rested or dropped, but they should have done enough to return to the side after both coming off the bench on Saturday. The only issue is that both Willian and Michy Batshuayi, their replacements in the starting XI on Saturday, were both very impressive. We know that the 3-4-3 formation will stay, with Gary Cahill set to return. N’Golo Kante is set to play his first game since being named PFA Player of the Year on Sunday night, capping off an excellent weekend for the Blues.

Southampton are missing Virgil van Dijk at the back, who is a rumoured target for Antonio Conte in the summer. They’re also missing Charlie Adam ahead of this game. The Saints have stuck with a 4-2-3-1 formation of late, and we expect them to use that set up once again on Tuesday. Claude Puel should be able to name his strongest available side, as the Saints had the weekend off to prepare for this fixture. Will that prove to be an advantage for them? With an EFL Cup campaign and Europa League games earlier in the season, the visitors have played more matches than the leaders this term. That week off might not be the biggest of boosts after all.

Southampton Form

Southampton have been solid enough under Puel this season, but there’s a clear step down in quality between this side and the one which finished sixth last term, The Saints aren’t in any position to push for Europe this season, although they did have a League Cup final appearance earlier in the campaign. Since losing to Manchester United at Wembley, there’s been little for Southampton to fight for. They’re on course to make the top half in the league, but that seems to be the height of their ambitions right now.

The Saints’ last Premier League game saw them taken apart at home to Manchester City. A 3-0 defeat to the Citizens came after back to back wins, and that highlights just how inconsistent they’ve been this term. They’ve lost 50% of their away Premier League games, so it’s hard to see the visitors proving to be much of a threat on Tuesday night.

Chelsea v Southampton Head to Head

While the Blues have won the last two meetings with the Saints, both of those have been at St Mary’s. Southampton have avoided defeat at Stamford Bridge in their last two visits. That includes a 3-1 win in their last trip, one of the darkest days in Jose Mourinho’s final few months at the club. There’s a stark contrast between that performance, and the ease at which Conte’s side won on the south coast this season.

  • Southampton 0-2 Chelsea, Oct 2016
  • Southampton 1-2 Chelsea, Feb 2016
  • Chelsea 1-3 Southampton, Oct 2015
  • Chelsea 1-1 Southampton, Mar 2015
  • Southampton 1-1 Chelsea, Dec 2014

Betting Tips

  • Both teams to score – 11/10 with Betfred
  • Willian to score any time – 23/10 with Ladbrokes

Chelsea come into this game priced at 4/9 with Bet365 to take the points on Saturday night. The draw is 7/2 with Coral, while Saints are 15/2 with BetVictor to cause a shock. Clearly the bookies aren’t expecting Southampton to pull off a shock this week. Despite the Blues’ recent troubles in the league, losing two of their last four outings, they’re expected to easily take a victory at the Bridge. However, defensive concerns could make that a little harder to accomplish, especially judging by their displays in the last week or so against Manchester United and Spurs. Both fixtures have continued to highlight the Blues’ issues at the back.

Chelsea have conceded in their last 10 Premier League matches, a run which stretches back to January’s win over Hull. Following that run up by shipping two against Tottenham wasn’t great, and it gives the Saints a chance to cause trouble this week. The visitors come have having scored in their last five visits to the Bridge, while four of the last five encounters between these two have seen both teams score. That makes BTTS look like excellent value at 11/10 with Betfred.

Our second tip is backing Willian to continue his brilliant form. We think he’ll keep his place, possibly at the expense of Pedro, and we’re backing the Brazilian to follow up his two goal haul in the semi final with an impressive display. After scoring in such an important game, he’s bound to be full of confidence. We can see the free-kick maestro making another impression this week, and he’s great value to score any time at 23/10 with Ladbrokes.

Chelsea v Tottenham Betting Tips (FA Cup) – Saturday 22nd April 2017

Following a 2-0 defeat at Manchester United last weekend, Chelsea are now facing a challenge from Tottenham on two fronts. Spurs have cut the gap at the top of the Premier League to just four points, and they’re hoping to put pressure on the leaders in the closing stages of the campaign. However, before the league run-in gets under way, there’s a meeting between the top two sides in England at Wembley. The Blues face a rampant Spurs side in the FA Cup semis this weekend, can they quickly bounce back from their setback at Old Trafford? Antonio Conte will be desperate to mastermind a turnaround.

Tottenham come into this match in excellent form, with pundits raving about their recent displays. However, they do fear the national stadium, despite agreeing to move to Wembley next season. In four European games at this ground this term Spurs managed one win, as they recorded early exits from both the Champions League and Europa League. That’s something the Blues can exploit here, especially given the experience Conte has at his disposal, compared to this youthful side which Pochettino has established.

Team News: Conte sweating on Courtois and Alonso

Chelsea’s plain sailing on the injury front fell apart at Old Trafford, as late injuries to Thibaut Courtois and Marcos Alonso cost them in that game. Conte will be left worrying about the fitness of both players ahead of this tie. Alonso should have recovered from his virus, which would come as a huge boost. Eden Hazard looked lost without the Spaniard’s overlapping runs, something no one else could bring to that left-hand side.

Asmir Begovic is an able deputy for Courtois, but the Blues will still want their first choice stopper restored to the starting line-up for such a massive game. While Conte was rotating in the cup, he’ll be avoiding that as much as possible. This is no time for a farewell run out for John Terry, who announced his departure this week. The club captain will leave in the summer, but he’ll be hoping to celebrate two more trophies before he moves elsewhere.

The big team news as far as Tottenham are concerned is around their set up. They have Harry Kane back, and Pochettino’s men are firing on all cylinders right now. However, they could well change their approach in an attempt to nullify Chelsea, as Jose Mourinho did to such great effect at Old Trafford.

Tottenham Form

Tottenham come into this clash in fantastic form, having won eight straight games ahead of this showdown. Spurs have scored at least twice in their last 11 matches, which puts them in a great position ahead of this clash. While their winning run is going to face stern opposition in the run in, Pochettino’s men must be full of confidence coming into this meeting.

While pundits have been falling over themselves to praise Spurs’ after their recent form, it’s worth considering that they’ve won their last two against average sides. Beating Bournemouth and Watford isn’t exactly a huge challenge, those are two poor teams who have little left to play for. Winning those matches at home isn’t something that sets them apart as title winners, although it’s kept them comfortably in the top four, and kept them in touch with the leaders. Stepping up to beat the Blues is a much tougher task.

Chelsea v Tottenham Head to Head

Chelsea will be worrying about their last meeting with Tottenham ahead of this clash, having lost 2-0 at White Hart Lane in January. That loss ended the Blues’ 13 match winning streak, and it showed how to beat the 3-4-3 for the first time since Conte switched to it. However, the leaders beat Spurs 2-1 in that run, and they have a strong record aside from that loss.

  • Tottenham 2-0 Chelsea, Jan 2017
  • Chelsea 2-1 Tottenham, Nov 2016
  • Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham, May 2016
  • Tottenham 0-0 Chelsea, Nov 2015
  • Chelsea 2-0 Tottenham, Mar 2015

Betting Tips

  • Both teams to score – 4/5 with Betfred
  • Chelsea to qualify – 5/6 with Sky Bet

Chelsea come into this game priced at 8/5 with Bet365 to win in 90 minutes, while Tottenham are priced at 9/5 with Coral to come out on top. A draw between these two is 9/4 with BetVictor, and that’s not something we can rule out. Given Tottenham’s form and the small gap between them, this clash could well go to extra time. Following Chelsea’s loss to Manchester United, the weaknesses in their 3-4-3 set up seem to have been exposed. Can the Blues find a way to get around the man marking which troubled them last weekend?

A major worry for the Blues is that their defence has been far too open of late. They’ve now conceded in 10 straight Premier League matches, which doesn’t bode well for this weekend’s clash. The Blues are facing a Tottenham side who are in great scoring form, and we expect Mauricio Pochettino’s men to find a way through. However, we’re backing the Blues to find the scoresheet, so we’re backing both teams to score at 4/5 with Betfred.

Given the Blues’ struggles at the back, it’s hard to make a case for backing them on the match betting. This could be a long clash, especially if Tottenham set up to frustrate the leaders. While we think Antonio Conte’s side will eventually come through this tie, we could see extra time or even penalties when these two meet.

Spurs have an awful record at Wembley, winning just one of their four matches here this term. That’s why we’re avoiding backing Chelsea on the match betting, and backing them to qualify for the final instead at 5/6 with Sky Bet. Overall, that seems to be much better value, and it’s a bet which could keep going through 120 minutes and then some.