Stoke City v Chelsea: Another Comfortable Three Points for League Leaders

Marko Arnautovic vs. David Luiz

There’s seemingly no stopping Chelsea in all competitions right now: Heading the Premier League by ten points with 11 games to go, Antonio Conte’s men edged past Manchester United on Monday night to reach the semi final of the FA Cup and a domestic double is certainly on the cards.

On Saturday, the Londoners make the trip to Stoke City, a team sitting in ninth position and while the markets all point to yet another Chelsea victory, they haven’t always had it their own way against Mark Hughes’ men in the past.

Match Odds

Chelsea are the away side but the comparative positions of these two teams in the league mean that the visitors are short odds on favourites at a best price of 8/13 with Coral and SkyBet. Elsewhere, the draw is on the table at a top price of 31/10 with MarathonBet while a win for Stoke is on offer at best odds of 29/5 with MarathonBet once again.

The issue with betting in the result market is that Stoke City are a difficult side to play against and Chelsea have found that out themselves in the past. December 2013 provided a memorable example of that as Stoke’s Oussama Assaidi’s late winner secured a 3-2 victory for the Potters.

This is a much better Chelsea side, of course, and we think they will come through but it may be much tighter than many are predicting.

Individual Goal Scorers

First goalscorer betting remains the most popular of the side markets and here we have Diego Costa leading the way as a best-priced 63/20 with MarathonBet to find the net first. Costa is Chelsea’s most obvious threat but further back in midfield, Eden Hazard has also been prolific and he is a better priced option at odds of 5/1 across the board with bet365 and Betway among those quoting that figure.

We’ve done well by backing Hazard in the anytime markets this season but his best price of 7/4 with BetFred and SkyBet looks a little short so, if you want an outside punt for this particular bet, how about Chelsea’s David Luiz?

His long range strikes, particularly those from set pieces haven’t been much in evidence this season but he is overdue and tempting best odds of 9/1 from William Hill and Betway for a strike in 90 minutes could be met by a small wager.

For Stoke, our thoughts in the anytime market go towards Joe Allen who is at the heart of everything that is good about this Potters side. The former Swansea City and Liverpool man is known more for his creative play and providing assists but has a healthy scoring record of six goals in 27 league games for Stoke so could therefore be worth a look at odds of 13/2 with either 888Sport or 32Red to get on the scoresheet.

Other Side Bets

We’ve mentioned that 3-2 win for Stoke back in 2013 and if you want more evidence of their threat, you only have to go back one campaign and a 1-0 victory for the Potters, courtesy of Marko Arnautovic.

We know that Chelsea are a better team now but this could still be tight. Over the 2.5 goal line is often seen as a safe bet by punters but that may not be so obvious and the best price on under 2.5 goals in close to odds against at 47/50 with MarathonBet.

Meanwhile, Both Teams to Score has actually sneaked over the Even Money point and you don’t often see that for any match. Chelsea have a mean defence but Stoke are an underrated team and we think that there is value in the best odds for this market of 21/20 with Stan James and 10Bet.

Nobody expects Chelsea to slip up in their title quest at this late stage of the campaign but there could be some bumps along the way. Stoke City away is a fixture that no team ever looks forward to and we feel that this game could be much tighter than other pundits are predicting.

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