With the English Premier League 2017/2018 Cup well underway in favor of Manchester City, Chelsea hosts this Saturday, December 30th, Stoke in their fight for the runner-up. In Stamford Bridge, the game, which is part of the schedule of the twenty-first round, is scheduled to start at 13h (GMT).
Chelsea’s recent performance
On Tuesday, December 26, Boxing Day, also at home, Chelsea struggled but managed to beat Brighton by 2-0. It thus remained in third place in the Premier League. However, now with 42 points (13 wins, three draws and four losses), he narrowed his handicap to a point less than Manchester United, a runner-up at Old Tradfford, 2-2, with Burnley.
The success against Brighton was the sixth consecutive victory of the blues in their stadium in the English Championship. A reaction after a faltering start to the season. For those stumbling blocks at the start of the match, the London side only appear as the Premier League’s fourth-best Premiership with 22 points (seven wins, one draw and two losses) out of 30.
Amid an agenda that sets four games in about ten days, coach Antonio Conte still has in his favor the fact that no athlete left the field injured on Tuesday. Thus, he will be able to count on practically all his available cast for the duel of this Saturday. The only exceptions are defender David Luiz (eight games in the English Championship 2017/2018, one goal) and midfielder Charly Musonda (two games, no goal).
The current form of Stoke
A frequent runner-up in the standings in recent seasons, Stoke has been able to return to his comfort zone by accumulating four points from the six of this year’s Christmas and New Year season. On December 23, he beat West Bromwich 3-1 at home. Three days later, he took the 1-1 draw away to Huddersfield.
He broke a five-game losing streak in six games and moved to 13th place in the standings by reaching 20 points (five wins, five draws and ten losses). It’s still not a comfortable situation. The difference for Bournemouth, eighteenth place and first in the relegation zone, is only three points.
The away games of his stadium have been a nightmare for Stoke. The team had only six points (one win, three draws and six losses) when they played as a visitor. It is the second worst performance in this area in the Premier League.
To try to improve this performance against Chelsea, Welsh coach Mark Hugghes has four medical doubts that must be clarified before setting the team. Glen Johnson (three matches in English 2017/2018, no goal), Bruno Martins (eight matches, no goal) and Erik Pieters (18 matches, no goal) are in injury treatment; and striker Jesé (nine games, one goal).
History of the bouts between Chelsea and Stoke
Chelsea came out with three more points in the final three times they faced Stoke. The most recent duel was on August 23 of this year when, as a visitor, thrashed by 4 to 0.
Chelsea have not been brilliant, however, showing a performance improvement in recent days. Stoke, by contrast, does not allow any confidence in its performance. So the hunch in the London team is the best option for the match. It has a price of 1.17 in Rivalo. Draw shows return of 7.00. Success visitor multiplies the investment by 15.00.