Saturday, May 15, 2021

Prediction: Chelsea vs Fulham

Verdict: Chelsea win & under four goals

Best Odds: 1/1

Bookmaker: Unibet

Turning their attention back to Premier League duties this weekend, Chelsea will welcome West London rivals Fulham to Stamford Bridge on Saturday evening.

Chelsea

Starting with the hosts, while Chelsea might have been disappointed to have played out a 1-1 draw against Real Madrid earlier in the week, The Blues did put in another eye-catching display on foreign soil. Holding a minor Champions League advantage in their semi-final against Los Blancos, the former Premier League champions also find themselves sat in pole position to clinch another top-four finish this season. Last seen on domestic duties picking up what could turn out to be a crucial 1-0 win away at surprise package West Ham across the capital, Chelsea have gained plenty of plaudits since bringing in new boss Thomas Tuchel. Still with their sights set on securing a silverware double this season, Saturday’s hosts also have an FA Cup final against Leicester on the cards. With it appearing that their stunning 5-2 defeat against West Brom earlier in the month was just a minor dip, it should be noted that the one-time Borussia Dortmund boss has seen his side taste domestic defeat just once since he took charge back in January.

Team News

Aside from midfielder Mateo Kovacic who is still dealing with a hamstring issue, Chelsea have a full squad to choose from on Saturday evening.

Fulham

As for the visitors, last seen getting hit with more last-gasp heartbreak across the capital at Arsenal, Fulham appear to be freefalling towards an immediate Championship return. Watching The Gunners snatch an injury-time equalizer on April 18th, Scott Parker’s side have failed to keep up the momentum they had prior to the international break. Despite appearing to have breathed new life into their charge for safety last month, The Cottagers find themselves sat seven points adrift of safety with just five Premier League matchups remaining. Gaining a reputation for their issues in front of goal, this weekend’s guests have managed to muster just a single point from their last five top-flight contests. Facing what should be a tough trip to the Champions League semi-finalists this weekend, Fulham should also be concerned by their worrying record against Saturday’s hosts. Suffering a 1-0 defeat when the two sides faced off earlier in the season, Parker’s side have lost each of their last six straight meetings against the former champions.

Team News

Fulham will once again be without the likes of Tom Cairney (knee), Terence Kongolo (knee) and Marek Rodak (finger) are out, though Kenny Tete could return after a spell out due to returning a positive coronavirus test.

Key Factors to Consider

    • Including a 1-0 win against Fulham back in January, Chelsea have won each of their last six meetings against The Cottagers.
    • Chelsea have lost just a single Premier League matchup since Thomas Tuchel took charge back in January.
    • Fulham have collected just a single point from their last five Premier League contests.
    • The Cottagers have also failed to score more than a single goal in any of their last 10 top-flight matchups.
    • Fulham have failed to win any of their 15 trips to Stamford Bridge.

    Conclusion

    Picking up a minor Champions League advantage out in Madrid on Tuesday night, Chelsea should be smelling a golden chance to extend on their purple patch this weekend. Last seen on top-flight duties picking up what could be a crucial 1-0 win away at West Ham, Thomas Tuchel’s side find themselves sat in pole position to clinch another top-four finish this year. With Fulham collecting just a single point from their last five Premier League contests, it should also be noted that they hold a woeful record against Saturday’s hosts. Losing each of their last six straight meetings against Chelsea and never recording a single win at Stamford Bridge, we’re backing a routine home victory this weekend.

    Verdict: Chelsea win & under four goals

    Best Odds: 1/1

    Bookmaker: Unibet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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