Chelsea take on West Ham at Stamford Bridge on this evening needing a win to boost their chances of finishing in the top four this season.
The race for Champions League qualification could hardly be closer as just three points separates third placed Tottenham from sixth-placed Manchester United so the Blues can’t afford any slip-ups.
Chelsea head into the game sitting fifth – level on points with Arsenal – but the Gunners had the chance to move clear only to lose 1-0 away at Everton yesterday.
Maurizio Sarri came under fire from the away support last week when Chelsea were losing to Cardiff City but a late double secured a crucial 2-1 win to silence his critics and that was followed up by a routine 3-0 win over Brighton in midweek.
Chelsea will now welcome London rivals West Ham to the Bridge with the Hammers sitting 11th in the Premier League table following an inconsistent campaign so Sarri should be confident of making it three wins on the bounce.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek will be assessed due to an on-going back problem but he’ll hope to retain his place after an excellent goal-scoring performance on Wednesday night if he’s passed fit.
Marcos Alonso should return from a minor hamstring injury while Pedro is also set to return to the squad after missing the Brighton game with a muscle problem.
As for West Ham, they’ll welcome Felipe Anderson, Samir Nasri and Ryan Fredericks back in to the squad but Andy Carroll, Jack Wilshere, Andriy Yarmolenko and Carlos Sanchez remain on the sidelines.
Betting odds & prediction
Some of the best online casino sites have Chelsea as the 3/10 favourites to win the game while you can get odds of 9/1 on West Ham taking home all three points. It’s easy to understand why as Chelsea have won 17 of the last 20 meetings and West Ham haven’t won at Stamford Bridge in the league in 17 years.
Football is one of the most difficult betting sports due to it’s unpredictable nature but this seems like a home banker as Chelsea are desperate for points to aid their top four push while West Ham have little left to play for. The visitors can be a dangerous side on their day but we predict a routine 2-0 victory for Chelsea – which can be backed at odds of 11/2.