At the beginning of the season not everybody had Chelsea in their title race reckoning but ten games in the Blues are unbeaten and it’s no surprise that they’re expected to get the better of Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge today.
Indeed, Chelsea haven’t lost in 15 games since losing to Manchester City in the Community Shield and are just 2/7 for a win that would put them second in the table after Arsenal and Liverpool drew yesterday.
Crystal Palace are about to face the second of four consecutive league matches against big-six teams and they started well with a 2-2 draw at home to Arsenal last Sunday. Wilfied Zaha may have dived for the second penalty that they earned but Arsenal also got lucky with a handball in the lead up to Aubameyang’s second goal and the point was deserved.
Indeed, they won the shots on target (3-2) and the corner count (6-4) which suggested that was an improved performance, although they could have taken a point from Goodison Park the week before had Luka Milivojevic’s penalty been put away before the hosts scored twice in the last here minutes. The idea of a one-man team is often used facetiously in football but Palace are incredibly reliant upon Wilfred Zaha, who has won penalties in their last two games whilst also scoring three goals this season, the most of any.
However, facing Chelsea at Stamford Bridge is likely to be a different test. Chelsea have won five of their last six in all competitions and put four past Burnley at Turf Moor last week, all of this without Eden Hazard, who has five goals in Chelsea’s last four league games at Stamford Bridge. He could well return but if not the in form Ross Barkley, who has scored in consecutive league games, can step up again whilst Willian impressed last week when adding his name to the scoresheet and there is the also the silky smooth midfield presence of Jorginhio as well to supply Alvaro Morata.
The Sarri approach – which has N’Golo Kante moving much more forward than he did during the last campaign – does leave their defence exposed at times with Antonio Rudiger given plenty of work as others around him bomb along. This does provide an opportunity for Palace – to Zaha – to get in behind the defence and strike a blow, so there could be plenty of goals here.
Chelsea v Crystal Palace
Premier League 4pm
Live on Sky Sports Premier League HD
HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches)
MAR 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 2-1 Crystal Palace
OCT 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Crystal Palace 2-1 Chelsea
APR 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 1-2 Crystal Palace
DEC 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Crystal Palace 0-1 Chelsea
JAN 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Crystal Palace 0-3 Chelsea
AUG 2015 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 1-2 Palace
MAY 2015 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 1-0 Crystal Palace
OCT 2014 PREMIER LEAGUE Crystal Palace 1-2 Chelsea
MAR 2014 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 1-0 Crystal Palace
DEC 2013 PREMIER LEAGUE Chelsea 2-1 Crystal Palace
An interesting market could be when the goals come. Since October five of Chelsea’s seven games have seen more goals in the second half whilst all of Palace’s away games have gone under the 1.5-goal line at half-time. starsports.bet offer 21/20 on more goals in the second half.
RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)
BACK MOST GOALS 2nd HALF 5 points at 21/20 with starsports.bet
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