FA Cup – Leicester v Chelsea: Conte Continues Battle to Keep Season Alive at King Power
The FA Cup is likely to be Chelsea’s only chance of silverware after Wednesday night’s trip to Barcelona. Antonio Conte’s men are a top price of 15/2 to win in 90 minutes in the Nou Camp, which does seem a little unlikely against Messi and company.
Tough games are coming thick and fast for Chelsea in recent weeks; a pair of battles against La Liga’s best team have been sandwiched around away trips to both Manchester clubs and now Chelsea must travel to the King Power Stadium on Sunday afternoon – Kick-off 16:30 – to take on Leicester City in the Sixth Round of the FA Cup.
The Foxes proved their recent wellbeing with a comfortable 4-1 away victory at relegation-threatened West Bromwich Albion last weekend to reach the 40 point mark in the Premier League, which assures Leicester of another season of top flight football next season.
Chelsea handed struggling Crystal Palace a 2-1 defeat to end a run of two defeats in succession against Manchester United and Manchester City. The victory against their local rivals maintained Chelsea’s hopes of clinching a top-four league finish, as the Blues are just four points behind fourth placed, Liverpool with eight games remaining.
Chelsea are the strong favourites with the bookmakers to progress to the Semi-Finals of the FA Cup. Betfred are as short as even money on the Londoners to qualify for Wembley, however, Unibet, and Black Type offer the slightly more generous odds of 23/20 on a Chelsea victory.
Slightly bizarrely, the odds on the Draw and a Leicester victory are the exact same – both with MarathonBet. The layer has priced up both outcomes at 131/50 and is the best available at the time of writing.
Leicester’s home record is good, if not spectacular. The Foxes are unbeaten at the King Power in nine games in all competitions, which suggests that Chelsea will not have an easy ride at the weekend. It wouldn’t be the most appreciated result at this time of the season, but my preference for this game is the Draw at the reasonable odds of 131/50 with Marathon Bet. The Foxes are a dogged outfit under Claude Puel and they can frustrate Chelsea to force a draw.
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Individual Goal Scorers
Recent signing from Arsenal, striker Olivier Giroud, is the market leader to score the opening goal in this game with Unibet and 888sport at 51/10, but he is passed upon on this occasion. The player who catches my eye is England striker, Jamie Vardy at 27/5 with Unibet and 888Sport. The 31 year old is in fine form and has six goals from his last eight appearances for the Foxes, so is worthy of a punt.
Others to consider at bigger prices include Willian – another player in fine form – at 8/1 with Unibet, while Riyad Mahrez should be under consideration at the tempting price of 10/1 with Black Type.
Other Side Bets
Both Teams to Score looks to be a solid selection again in this contest, as you can guarantee that both sides will want to attack and avoid a potential replay. Three firms, Sport Pesa, 10Bet and 188BET offer the best price of 14/19 on BTTS, which looks to be a very solid selection.
I was mulling over the possibility of tipping up a Leicester victory in this game, but I feel that Chelsea will get a positive result – albeit in a draw. However, the option with bet365 in the Double Chance market for a Leicester or Draw outcome at 4/5 is another bet worthy of considering. I expect that Leicester will fly out of the traps against their more illustrious opponents and make the game very difficult for Chelsea.
Regular readers of these columns know we like to offer up a Correct Score bet, and this time we are going for one at a price. Considering we believe that the game will end in stalemate, our selection is for an exciting 2-2 draw at 14/1 with William Hill. Let’s hope so!