A huge London derby encounter will close out Gameweek 22 as Tottenham hosts Chelsea in a key clash near the top of the table.
The Spurs made a strong start to the current campaign under Jose Mourinho. Though it took time last season to get used to his tactics and style, the squad seemed like early favourites to win the league. However, a run of very poor form in recent weeks has seemingly put any hopes in grave danger. They now sit in 6th spot, and after winning just two matches out of their last 9, they’ll be desperate for some changed fortunes.
Chelsea meanwhile enter in the midst of a new era themselves, as this will be the first big-fixture under new manager Thomas Tuchel’s watch. The Blues are trying to escape a tough stretch of their own, and one which saw the firing of old manager Frank Lampard. Chelsea is littered with talent and recent high-price acquisitions. This is a group under big pressure to succeed.
In such a high-profile encounter, where both clubs need results, it should bring out a great match of football on Thursday afternoon. Despite poor runs of late, both Tottenham and Chelsea still see paths to the top – but a win here is a necessity. Continue reading on beneath the posted odds for further analysis, team news, and a betting prediction for this intriguing affair.
Tottenham vs. Chelsea Betting Odds:
Over 2.5 (+100)
Under 2.5 (-120)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
Tottenham vs. Chelsea Pick:
One of the reasons the odds entering Thursday’s fixture are so heavily slanted towards Chelsea is the key absence of Spurs’ striker Harry Kane. The England international and prolific talent will be missing due to an ankle injury, and Tottenham will very much miss him in a game of such magnitude.
Expect Mourinho to stick with Tottenham’s 4-2-3-1 formation, except instead of Kane at the top, it will likely be Carolis Vinicius playing the role of lone striker. He will be supported by Son-Heung min and the rapid Steven Bergwijn – though without Kane, the attack could struggle.
The Spurs haven’t been feisty enough in recent weeks, soft in both defense and within the midfield. They haven’t been winning balls and distributing, and a skilled squad like Chelsea could exploit that. Though the Spurs won’t control much of the ball, without Kane it remains to be seen how deadly their attack can truly be.
For Tuchel’s Chelsea, expect a mostly complete lineup and the former PSG-boss should have a deep assortment of talent to choose from. Chelsea will again go with three at the back, a tireless midfield featuring N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic, and Olivier Giroud playing the role of lone striker. He’ll be supported by talented pieces in Mason Mount and Hakim Ziyech – a duo that has featured prominently when Chelsea has been at their best this campaign.
The first time these teams met this season, it was a cagey, low-scoring affair. And despite all of the attacking talent on the field, it’s likely to follow a similar script on Thursday. Tottenham will be cautious without Kane, while Chelsea will push the pace, but ultimately struggle to break the Spurs down. While the Blues are the more likely team to be proactive and look for offense, the better value currently rests in the Under 2.5 goals market. Chelsea should escape this one with a narrow victory in a tight contest, but back low goals to close out Gameweek 22.