Best Odds: 3/5
Premier League title runners Chelsea lock horns with reigning champions Leicester City hoping for a swift return to winning ways following the end of their impressive 13-match winning run in the competition.
Claudio Ranieri’s men will hope to put another dent in Blues’ title bid, which in all honesty would be considered a major surprise as things stand at this point in time.
Sitting in 15th place in the standings and only six points clear of the relegation zone, Leicester City have found their title defence perhaps even harder than they could have imagined. Claudio Ranieri’s men have so far lost five and won only nine Premier League matches whereas their on-the-road struggles have been pinpointed as the biggest problem thus far. Together with Burnley, Foxes are the only Premier League side yet to win away and the Saturday’s clash with Chelsea will be a good opportunity for Leicester to get their payback for the 3-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge back in October. Foxes’ inconsistence gives us little reason to feel optimistic however and it will be extremely interesting to see how the hosts will cope without three important first-team members out on international duty.
Claudio Ranieri has no fresh injury concerns to worry about and will once again field the best team available after resting a couple of players in the FA Cup against Everton.
Sadly, the Italian will not be able to call upon Amartey, Mahrez and Slimani, who are all unavailable due to their Africa Cup of Nations obligations.
A comfortable 4-2 FA Cup victory over Peterborough during the week will have provided Chelsea with an important morale boost which will be extremely significant after the frustrating 2-0 Premier League defeat to Tottenham Hotspur last time out. The Blues’ impressive 13-match winning run came to an end, but the players are keen to bounce back immediately and continue their title charge. There is no better way to do so than to take another big scalp against the reigning champions. Chelsea will have plenty of reason to feel optimistic as they lost only once in last 12 encounters with Leicester. Antonio Conte’s men are enjoying a rich vein of form this season, which came as a direct result of Conte’s tactical change to 3-4-3, which yielded impressive results. The Italian manager is likely to field the strongest side available for the trip to King Power Stadium.
The visiting team will have best team available for selection.
Captain Jonh Terry is frustrated to be forced to serve the arguably undeserved suspension fo the red card he was shown against Peterborough, whereas Marco Alonso has struggled with a muscular injury and could miss the Saturday’s game.
Key Factors to Consider
- Chelsea won 5 of last 6 away matches
- Blues lost once in 12 previous encounters with Leicester
- There were over 2.5 goals in 3 of the last 4 Chelsea’s matches
- Diego Costa scored 14 goals in the Premier League so far
- Leicester miss 3 players due to Africa Cup of Nations
Chelsea will be extremely motivated to get back to winning ways and bounce back into the title race. Antonio Conte’s men are in great form and their defeat at Spurs can be considered a temporarily glitch, which is why we think that Leicester City are in for a beating.
Best Odds: 3/5
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