Verdict: Chelsea win
Best Odds: 1/1
Making a return to winning ways in midweek, Chelsea will be looking to extend their buffer in the top-four when they travel to a struggling Goodison Park on Saturday lunchtime.
Starting with the hosts, suffering a 5-2 hammering away at bitter rivals Liverpool in midweek, Everton have continued on what has been a Premier League campaign to forget. Slipping into the drop zone on Wednesday night despite breaking the bank over the summer, the Blues find themselves in the midst of a three-match losing run and saw Head Coach Marco Silva removed from his position in the dugout on Thursday night. With their woeful run of form highlighted by a 2-0 loss at home against relegation scrappers Norwich last month, fans around Goodison Park have seen their side record just a single Premier League victory since the 19th of October. With the mood in the blue half of Merseyside the lowest it has been in recent memory, a huge part of Everton’s continued problems have come down to some glaring issues at the back. Shipping five against Liverpool in midweek, Saturday’s guests have shipped nine goals on their losing run and they have also now recorded just a single victory in their last five top-flight matches on home soil.
Andre Gomes and Jean-Philippe Gbamin remain sidelined, while fellow midfielder Fabian Delph also misses out.
Seamus Coleman could return this weekend having missed the previous two matches while Cuco Martina also remains out with a knee injury.
As for the visitors, bouncing back from their shock defeat against London rivals West Ham last weekend to clinch a 2-1 win over Aston Villa in West London on Wednesday night, Frank Lampard will be desperate for his side to fully find their early season momentum. Still in a battle to secure a spot in the knockout stage of this year’s Champions League, the former England midfielder finds his side open the weekend with a five-point buffer from losing their top-four status. Despite picking up three points at Stamford Bridge in midweek, there is no doubt that the former Premier League champions have continued to shine while outside of the capital. Aside from a close-fought 2-1 defeat away at the Etihad last month, Chelsea are unbeaten in their other eight matches on the road. If the Royal Blues are to land their first victory at Goodison Park since April 2017, then Lampard will be calling for leading marksman Tammy Abraham to lead their charge. Finding the net against Villa on Wednesday, the now fully-fledged England international has 11 top-flight goals this season and sits second in the race for the Golden Boot.
Antonio Rudiger is back in training and is expected to take part in at least one of Chelsea’s upcoming fixtures as the schedule piles up, but Saturday may be a little too early to risk him.
Key Factors to Consider
- Chelsea have not recorded a victory at Goodison Park since April 2017.
- However, Saturday’s guests have lost just one of their last nine away matches across all competitions.
- Striker Tammy Abraham has 11 Premier League goals this season, the second-best return of any player in the top-flight.
- Everton have lost their last three Premier League matches on the bounce.
- The Toffees have also won just one of their last five top-flight matches at Goodison Park.
On paper, Chelsea should see this as a golden opportunity to break their Goodison Park duck. Making a return to winning ways in midweek and continuing to catch the eye with their performances away from Stamford Bridge, the Blues should be confident of heaping more pressure onto Everton. With the Toffees suffering three defeats on the bounce and continuing to show some glaring issues at the back, we’re backing an away victory for Frank Lampard’s side this weekend.
Verdict: Chelsea win
Best Odds: 1/1
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