Verdict: Chelsea win
Best Odds: 1/1
Knowing that three points on Wednesday would put them into pole position to secure a route out of Group H, Chelsea will make the trip to Valencia’s Estadio de Mestalla in midweek.
Starting with the hosts, while Valencia may have finally appeared to be a side finding their feet entering November and enjoying a three-match winning run, the Spanish outfit slumped to a very disappointing 2-1 defeat away at Real Betis over the weekend. Sat level on points with both Ajax and Chelsea in the race to secure a spot out of Group H, there is no doubt that the Bats will be glad to make a return to the Estadio de Mestalla on Wednesday night. Including battling from behind to eventually pick up an impressive 4-1 victory over Lille in their last Champions League outing, Albert Celades’ men are unbeaten in their last four matches across all competitions, winning three of those appearances. There is no doubt that Valencia will also take some comfort from their most recent meeting against the Premier League outfit. Despite traveling to West London as an underdog with the bookmakers back in September, Los Ches picked up a 1-0 victory.
Denis Cheryshev is closing in on a return from injury, but no risks will be taken on the fitness of the Russia international.
As for the visitors, while Frank Lampard would have been disappointed to have seen his side leave the Etihad empty-handed over the weekend after taking a one-goal lead, the Blues have continued on what has been a very impressive resurge. Still holing a seven-point buffer in the top-four and seen to be one of the leading contenders to secure a spot in the knockout stage of this year’s Champions League, Lampard’s youthful squad has continued to shine in the final third. Battling from three goals down to snatch the most dramatic of points off of Ajax at Stamford Bridge earlier in the month, the former England midfielder has seen his side continue to catch the eye while outside of West London. Aside from their defeat against the defending Premier League champions over the weekend, the reigning Europe League winners have won seven of their last eight on the road, including a 1-0 win out in Amsterdam last month.
Lampard is likely to hand a recall to Mason Mount after the England international dropped down to the substitutes’ bench at the weekend. The playmaker could take the place of Mateo Kovacic, providing that N’Golo Kante suffered no injury issues against Man City.
Key Factors to Consider
- When the two sides met back in September, Valencia landed a 1-0 win.
- Chelsea have won seven of their last eight matches across all competitions.
- Four of the last five Champions League matches between the two sides have seen both teams find the net at full-time.
- Chelsea have found the net in 22 of their 23 matches across all competitions this season.
- The Spanish outfit have recorded just one clean sheet in their last seven matches at the Estadio de Mestalla.
While Valencia may have landed a 1-0 win when they faced off against Chelsea back in September, the Premier League outfit should be confident of righting their wrong on Wednesday evening. Continuing to shine away from Stamford Bridge, including picking up a stunning 1-0 win away Ajax last month, we’re backing Frank Lampard’s youthful squad to come out on top and move one step closer to securing a route out of Group H in midweek.
Verdict: Chelsea win
Best Odds: 1/1
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