We’ve picked the best Chelsea matches so far this season in Premier league. Not everyone expected Chelsea to have such a good start, but their fans did, just like those who like to bet on football.
“I have to know the characteristics of the players. I have to adapt myself to the characteristics of the championship and the players. Now I study my players.” said Sarri after the win away against Huddersfield 0-3.
For the BBC Sport, Maurizio Sarri said: “The game was more difficult than the result. If you see the result, you think it was a very easy match, but in the first half it was very difficult against physical opponents. We are not a physical team so for 20 minutes we were in trouble but we did very well. In this moment we are not at the top of our potential but we had the capacity to suffer for 20 minutes in the first half.”
“Chelsea were very clinical. They had four or five chances and scored three. We started very well in the first half. We pressed them high and the players did very well.” said Huddersfield coach David Wagner after the loss.
Second one we chose was the one home agains’t Arsenal. It was a tough one, but very important. It ended 3-2 after the late goal from Marcos Alonso. Man of the match was Jorginho, he won the ball 9x, had touched the ball 105x, and made 99 passes at with the 91,6%.
The third one was against Cardiff at home, 4-1 was the final outcome. The only match where Chelsea has scored 4 goals this season in Premier league. Man of the match was Eden Hazard who scored a hattrick.
“Hazard was unbelievable, unplayable. It was one of those days. Every time he got the ball he made things happen. The equalising goal was fantastic, his second had a little bit of luck, and the penalty was undoubtedly a penalty.” said Tony Cottee for Sky Sports.
Chelsea have won their first five matches in the Premier league this season, which is the fourth time, previously done in seasons 2005-06, 2009-10 and 2010-11, which is more than any other team in the league.
Chelsea also won the first match in the Europa league against PAOK away in Greece with 0-1. Willian scored in the early 7th minute.
In the first match against Liverpool, we won at Anfield in the cup on Wednesday 1-2 with a comeback after losing 1-0.
The last match for Chelsea in Premier league was against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on 29th September, we drew. Currently, City and Liverpool are leading 2 points ahead of us on top.
Liverpool in Premiership have enjoyed their start of the season by winning all 6 matches so far. This was their hardest test so far this season in Premier league, in which they drew.
Aleksandr Golovin has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea following his exploits for Russia in the 2018 World Cup. The forward was considered one of the emerging prospects in European football due to the standard of his performances for CSKA Moscow over the past two seasons.
However, he caught the eye with his display in the opening match of the 2018 World Cup, scoring a brilliant free-kick to guide Russia to a crushing win against Saudi Arabia. Since then, he has been active in the final third, becoming one of Russia’s most influential players in their drive for the latter stages of the competition. At the age of 22, Golovin appears to be on his way to becoming the key man for his country for many years to come.
Chelsea are not the only side in the Premier League to have noticed his talents. Manchester United and Arsenal have also been reported to have interest in the forward. The Blues appear to be in prime position to secure his signature, although it will have to wait until Russia are out of World Cup 2018, with Stanislav Cherchesov’s men backed in the international football betting odds at 20/1 to go on and win the competition.
Compared to prices around the world at the moment, Golovin would be a decent price in the range between £25m to £30m. However, the need for Chelsea is great as they were far too reliant on Eden Hazard in the final third last season. Their big signing of last summer, Alvaro Morata, failed to fire in front of goal in the decisive moments of the campaign, despite making a good start to life at Stamford Bridge. Whether the Chelsea manager is Antonio Conte or Maurizio Sarri at the start of the new season, they will have to weigh up their options to get their best out of the team on the pitch.
Olivier Giroud could be an important player for the Blues next term and he did make an impact in his five months at the club after joining from Arsenal. Conte or Sarri will be paying attention to see how he has been deployed at World Cup 2018 for France. He has played the lone striker role with Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Blaise Matuidi playing behind as three support players. That system could suit Chelsea perfectly with the addition of Golovin alongside Willian and Hazard.
Hazard has been known to not play well with others in the final third, but Golovin appears to have a similar trait to the Belgian, displaying a willingness to run with the ball. That could alleviate the pressure off the 26-year-old as Chelsea looked to him far too often to provide solutions, especially in bigger games when the leading sides made significant strides to put defenders around him. An additional ball carrier could provide the perfect complement with Giroud occupying space in the middle. Add Willian’s deadly delivery from dead-ball situations, then Chelsea could be on their way to forming a formidable forward line if they can get a deal for Golovin secured.
Premier League bosses announced fixtures for the eagerly anticipated 2018/19 Premier League season, Chelsea bringing the curtain up with a trip to Huddersfield Town on Saturday 11th August. The Blues are then at home to Arsenal in a London derby seven days later before visiting St James Park.
All eyes are currently fixed on Russia with the host nation kicking things off with a stunning 5-0 win over Saudi Arabia in Moscow. That result moved bookmakers to shorten the world cup 2018 betting odds on a home win, a market dominated by Brazil and Germany.
The race to be crowned kings of planet football captures the imagination but there will be plenty of punters on the lookout for their value fix in the early Premier League betting. Manchester City have been scratched up as convincing favourites to win two-in-a-row with no more than 8/13 available at Paddy Power.
Liverpool are expected to be the champions’ main danger at 9/2 and you have to cast your eye down to fifth in the betting to find Chelsea written off as 10/1 outsiders. If odds compilers are to be believed the Stamford Bridge residents will end behind the likes of Manchester United and Tottenham again.
Fans are demanding improvement in the coming months, starting with a strong showing in the summer transfer window, much better than we saw this time last year when Antonio Conte missed out on a host of targets including Belgian scorer Romelu Lukaku. Names currently being linked to the bridge are Alfie Mawson, Alisson Becker and Anthony Martial.
A return to the top-four and Champions League football is the least season ticket holders expect but there’s a competitive 8/11 trading, that quote leaving them fourth in the list. Average punters can ignore a top-six finish at 1/7.
A squad low on confidence will require a strong start to the season and bookies expect Chelsea to hit the ground running with a comfortable win over The Terriers at Kirklees Stadium on matchday one. A punt on the visitors will land supporters 2/5 at the time of writing and that’ll surely pull its weight in accumulator bets. The draw goes 3/1 with Huddersfield 5/1 for an upset.
The prices would suggest a strong away win is on the cards but checking the head-to-heads stats tells a different story. From 66 recorded matches in competitive action the scores stand at Chelsea 29-27 Huddersfield with 10 draws. The pair played out a rather uninspiring share in their most recent meeting, Alonso responding to cancel out a Depoitre opener early in the second-half.
Both teams to score would’ve been settled as a winning bet on that occasion and the result fell into line with the trends. Both clubs have found the net at least once in each of their last four with a 1-0 Huddersfield win back in 1999 the odd one out in seven – a run stretching back to 1983.
That appears to have been lost on odds-makers who have no in the both-teams-to-score field as favourite – 8/11 at Paddy Power against the 11/10 for yes.
The 2018 World Cup is underway in Russia and, with a dozen or so Chelsea-owned players called up by their countries competing at the tournament, Blues fans can see some of their favourites on the big stage.
With global sporting focus fixed on the World Cup, there’s also plenty of opportunities to turn your specialist knowledge of Stamford Bridge stars past and present to your advantage. Bearing that in mind, here are four World Cup bets involving Chelsea players you could see out in Russia.
Group C straight forecast: France and Denmark
There’s a distinct possibility that Blues teammates will come directly up against one another in Group C during the final game of the pool, as January transfer window signing Olivier Giroud and France play the Danes with Andreas Christensen in their defence.
Marking Les Bleus target man Giroud is something Denmark centre-back Christensen will have done in training throughout 2018, but how will that play out in a World Cup match remains to be seen. By the time the French and Danes play one another on Tuesday, 26 June, both will hope to have secured passage to the knockout phase.
Group C also contains Peru and Australia, who are decidedly lacking strength in depth in comparison to the European nations. It leaves a 7/4 straight forecast flutter with Euro 2016 finalists France just pipping the Danes to top spot in the pool looking great value.
Brazil to win the World Cup outright
Chelsea have had some Brazilian World Cup heroes and villains down the years; from Juliano Belletti to David Luiz. Hard-working winger Willian will hope to be the former as he is part of a stellar Selecao side assembled by Tite to atone for the 7-1 semi-final thrashing by Germany on home soil four years ago.
Playing alongside recognised stars Neymar, Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho, Willian’s set-piece nous should serve the Samba Boys well in Russia. That is if the other forwards, including young Gabriel Jesus, let him strike a dead ball!
Brazil are clear betting favourites for the World Cup on Oddschecker and, with no-nonsense defenders like Thiago Silva and Joao Miranda marshalling things at the back, it’s easy to see why. If they get the balance between defence and attack right this time, then Tite’s Selecao should prove worthy market leaders.
Belgium to beat England in Group G
There’s a certain irony that many of Belgium’s Golden Generation have come to play football in England. Blues goalie Thibaut Courtois and star forward Eden Hazard are set to line-up against the country they ply their trade at club level in on Thursday, 28 June.
Courtois will be charged with keeping Gareth Southgate’s young England team that may contain Ruben Loftus-Cheek out at one end, while Hazard could find himself running at Gary Cahill. It’s another training ground battle we might see at the World Cup.
Both the Belgians and Three Lions will have hoped to already be through to the knockout phase by the time they cross paths. Given their vast strength in depth, abandoning patriotism for the firepower of Hazard and others could pay with Belgium trading around 6/4 to beat England.
Spain to finish second in Group B
It’s unheard of for a major footballing nation like Spain to sack their coach on the eve of the tournament, but Julen Lopetegui will not lead La Roja – whose squad contains versatile Chelsea defender Cesar Azpiliceuta – in Russia. His appointment as Real Madrid manager once the World Cup was over came from left-field but rubbed up Spanish FA chiefs the wrong way.
Lopetegui’s loss is to the benefit of last-minute replacement Fernando Hierro, but this is bound to have made some waves in the camp, as players wanted the coach to stay on. Spain play their bitter rivals and neighbours Portugal first in Group B still a matter more of hours than days after changing manager.
While the remaining opposition in the pool, Iran and Morocco, shouldn’t cause La Roja any problems on paper, the stakes of their opening game are sky high. Backing Spain to finish second behind a well-organised Portugal outfit led on the field by Cristiano Ronaldo is well worth considering in light of these dramatic recent events.
The Video Assistant Referee or VAR as it is known, is becoming an increasingly prominent fixture in football and will be used at a World Cup for the first time this year, with the tournament being hosted by Russia. The system can only be used in the cases of allowing or disallowing goals, red cards, penalties or mistaken identities.
The latest World Cup betting odds have both 2014 hosts Brazil and defending champions Germany as the joint favourites to win this year’s tournament, at a price of 9/2. They will both be hoping that VAR is effective, as in some domestic competitions it has proven to be ineffective at helping the referee to make a decision.
The World Cup has seen some appalling refereeing decisions over the years, some which have had very little impact to the overall result, whilst others have seen a team progress that should have been knocked out.
Italy vs Uruguay 2014
In what was arguably the ‘Group of Death’ at the tournament in 2014, England, Costa Rica, Uruguay and Italy were all battling it out for a place in the second round. It was Costa Rica and Uruguay who ultimately progressed, however in the final round of the group, VAR could have seen Italy through at the expense of Uruguay.
There were two incidents where Italy believed the referee was mistaken, although in hindsight only one would VAR have had an impact. The first was the sending off of Claudio Marchisio, which after seeing replays, was completely justified as the midfielder needlessly had his studs up against Egidio Arevalo.
The second incident saw Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez and Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini come together before both fell to the ground apparently in pain. Although not initially obvious, what had actually happened was that Suarez had bitten Chiellini in an off the ball incident. Suarez received no punishment for the incident and just over a minute later, Uruguay scored from a corner and went on to win the match. Had the match ended in a draw, Italy would have progressed on goal difference.
Suarez received a ban for the incident which lasted for nine international matches, suggesting that he should have received a red card during the match. A red card for Suarez would have levelled the playing field and could have changed the outcome of the match.
South Korea World Cup 2002
It was at the World Cup in 2002, hosted by South Korea and Japan, to date the only time there has been more than one host of the tournament that saw a number of controversial refereeing decisions that the use of VAR would have eradicated.
South Korea benefitted the most from these decisions, which helped them see off Italy in the second round and Spain in the quarter-final. In the game against Italy, Francesco Totti was wrongly given a second booking for supposedly diving, despite replays clearly showing contact being made between the striker and South Korean defender Song Chong-gug. Totti was one of Italy’s best players and to lose him shortly before half time in extra time was a blow to the Italians. Ahn Jung-Hwan would go on to score the golden goal in the 117th minute. The game was littered with fouls from the Koreans which went unpunished despite several being potential red card offences.
South Korea’s game against Spain was arguably even worse, with Spain denied two legitimate goals. The first was a Ruben Baraja header that was ruled out by Egyptian referee Gamal Al-Ghandour for alleged shirt pulling and pushing, despite the Spanish player seemingly being innocent of such conduct. The second came in extra time, as Fernando Morientes scored with a header from a Joaquin cross, only for the linesman to rule the goal out, believing that the ball had crossed the line for a goal kick before Joaquin put the cross in. Replays showed that this was not the case and that the goal should have stood, which would have won Spain the match via the golden goal. Instead South Korea knocked Spain out on penalties and became the first Asian team to reach the semi-finals of a World Cup.
West Germany vs France 1982
The 1982 World Cup semi-final saw West Germany take on France for the chance to play Italy in the final. Both sides had some incredible players in their team, with Germany’s squad containing European Footballer of the Year Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and France with Michel Platini, who would go on to win three Ballon d’Ors.
The most controversial moment of the match came in the 60th minute, when French defender Patrick Battiston, who was only subbed on in the 50th minute, was chasing a through ball from Platini. The West German goalkeeper, Harald Schumacher came racing out of his goal in order to prevent Battiston from getting to the ball first, however, instead of getting to the ball, he clattered into the Frenchman, knocking out his two front teeth and leaving him unconscious.
The collision occurred just inside the box, meaning France should have been awarded a penalty as well as seeing their opponents reduced to ten men. At the end of 90 minutes, the score was 1-1: had France had been given a penalty for that incident and be playing against ten men, they would have more than likely progressed to the final and could have won their very first World Cup, something that they later achieved when they hosted the tournament in 1998.
Germany vs England 2010
The second round of the 2010 World Cup saw old rivals England and Germany play each other in the tournament for the first time since the semi-finals of the 1990 World Cup. Germany took a 2-0 lead after the 32nd minute of the match before England’s Matthew Upson got a goal back five minutes later. However, it was two minutes after England got their goal that controversy struck, as Frank Lampard took a shot outside of the area, the ball hit the crossbar and clearly crossed the line before bouncing out again.
The referee ruled that the ball had not crossed the line meaning England were denied the legitimate equaliser. Germany would go on to thrash England 4-1 and who knows, if England had been allowed the goal, things may have been very different and England would have potentially become the favourites in World Cup betting tips for the remainder of the tournament.
England vs West Germany 1966
When Lampard’s goal was disallowed, it was seen by many in Germany as justice following the controversy in the 1966 World Cup final. England were the hosts and had beaten Argentina and Portugal on their way to the final. West Germany had beaten Uruguay and the Soviet Union to book their place at the old Wembley Stadium.
England were going for their first World Cup win, while West Germany, who had previously won the tournament in 1954, were looking for their second. West Germany took the lead after 12 minutes, before Geoff Hurst equalised for England six minutes later. England’s Martin Peters scored their second goal just over ten minutes later before Wolfgang Weber got a last minute equaliser to take the match into extra time.
It was in extra time that the controversial moment took place, as England’s Geoff Hurst took a shot at goal which hit the cross bar and bounced back out, however, it’s almost impossible to tell whether it went in or not. Azerbaijani linesman Tofiq Bahramov gave the goal and Geoff Hurst would add another goal to complete his hat-trick and in turn guide England to a 4-2 victory. It’s probably the only controversial moment mentioned here in which even VAR would struggle. Given how close it looks in replays, it was likely not a goal, and therefore England would not have taken the lead and Germany may well have gone on to win the game.
Argentina vs England 1986
One of the most infamous goals in World Cup history was scored in the quarter-final match between Argentina and England before being followed up just minutes later by one of the best goals ever scored.
After a first half which contained no goals, it took just six minutes after the restart for a goal to be scored, although it was to be the most controversial goal in World Cup history. Argentina legend Diego Maradona played the ball to Jorge Valdano, however the ball actually went to England’s Steve Hodge, who miscued his clearance and the ball flew back in the air towards the England goal. Maradona chased the ball while England’s goalkeeper Peter Shilton charged towards the ball in an effort to punch it clear. Maradona, who was seven inches shorter than Shilton, managed to reach the ball first, however he actually used his hand in order to score the goal.
This goal would forever be known as ‘The Hand of God’ goal, after Maradona’s post-match press conference in which he said the goal was scored “a little with the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God”. Five minutes after the ‘Hand of God’, came the ‘Goal of the Century’ in which Maradona collected the ball inside his own half before running towards the English goal, beating four English players and finding the back of the net. If VAR had existed, the ‘Hand of God’ goal would have been ruled out, Maradona may have been sent off, which would have denied the ‘Goal of the Century’ and against ten men England may have progressed through to the semi-final and potentially even win it.