Competition: Premier League – Chelsea vs. Stoke City
Venue: Stamford Bridge – Saturday, April 4th – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)
Match Odds: Chelsea 1/4 – Draw 9/2 – Stoke 11/1
Chelsea face Stoke City in the late kick off on Saturday night at Stamford Bridge, with the Blues looking to further cement their place at the top of the summit towards winning their first Premier League title since the 2009/2010 season.
For Stoke, a win is much needed after suffering back-to-back defeats before the International break. If the Potters can pick up a win at Stamford Bridge then Chelsea’s lead at the top could be closed to just three points if Manchester City can win at Crystal Palace on Monday night.
Chelsea come into this game six points ahead of title rivals City and still have not lost at home all season with their record standing at eleven wins and three draws, but they do have a game in hand over their nearest challengers so everything seems to be in the Blues’ favour.Embed from Getty Images
Just before the International break, Chelsea beat Hull City in a hard fought game at the KC Stadium that should have been a lot more straightforward after they took a 2-0 lead.
Stoke City’s last two games have ended in defeat after going on a three-game win streak prior to that, with a home loss to Crystal Palace and a loss away at West Brom. Stoke currently sit in the top half of the table, where they will hope to finish up by the end of the season, perhaps building on last year’s ninth-place finish.Embed from Getty Images
The reverse fixture saw Chelsea win 2-0 away at the Britannia, with goals from captain John Terry and Cesc Fabregas.
The Blues have won the last eight meetings between the two sides at Stamford Bridge and will be confident of making that nine on Saturday evening.
Chelsea could be without Diego Costa after the forward withdrew from the Spain squad with a muscular injury and is a major doubt. Petr Cech has come back from Czech Republic duty also with a muscular injury, and so he is a also a huge doubt. Meanwhile John Obi Mikel is in line to come back from his knee injury and could make the squad.
Stoke City will be without Victor Moses who is ineligible to face his parent club, whilst Bojan Krkic is a long-term absentee along with Peter Odemwingie. The good news for the Potters is that Marc Muniesa could return to the back four after suffering with hamstring trouble.
Chelsea’s last five: W/D/W/D/W
Stoke City’s last five: W/W/W/L/L
Key stat: Since Stoke’s promotion to the Premier League, Chelsea have scored 29 times against the Potters in the Premier League, including a 7-0 win at Stamford Bridge the year Chelsea won the title in 2009/2010.Embed from Getty Images
Key Player: Loic Remy – When Diego Costa doesn’t play, the Frenchman rarely fails to impress and his winner against Hull last time out could give him huge confidence ahead of this one.
Chelsea 3-0 Stoke City – This should be a routine win for the Blues that will see Chelsea stretch their lead at the top to nine points before City play on Monday.