Leeds United vs Chelsea
Things have been going quite swimmingly so far for Thomas Tuchel at Chelsea. The Blues are unbeaten since he has taken over and have won six of their last nine matches in the Premier League to break back into the top four.
Tuchel’s next test will come at Elland Road as they take on Leeds United, who are not in the best of form at the moment.
The Whites have lost four of their last five matches and are having some problems finding the back of the net. And now, Patrick Bamford and co. must find a way past a Chelsea side whose defence has been close to unbeatable since Tuchel took charge.
Leeds suddenly lacking goals
Leeds United are in the midst of their roughest run of Premier League 2021 results to date. Their loss to West Ham last week was their fourth in the last five games. More concerningly, they have failed to score in three of those games.
Both Rodrigo Moreno and Kalvin Phillips returned from their lengthy injury layoffs against West Ham as Leeds were able to get off 17 shots. But much like in their loss to Aston Villa, Leeds were unable to create many clear goalscoring chances despite their dominance in possession.
Patrick Bamford has had a terrific season overall with 13 goals, tied for fourth in the league. But he has scored just once in his last five games and did not have a single shot on target in three of those games.
The 27-year-old has started all 27 league games to date, and despite Marcelo Bielsa making changes to the starting line-up in recent weeks, he is unlikely to take out his star no. 9.
But Bamford – a former Chelsea man – scored against the Blues on his return to Stamford Bridge earlier this season and perhaps the prospect of scoring another goal against his old club will provide an added bit of punch that he needs.
Meanwhile, Jack Harrison could potentially return to the first XI with Helder Costa failing to make much of an impact in his last two starts.
Chelsea continue to improve under Tuchel
Chelsea have been right up there with leaders Manchester City as the form teams in the Premier League in recent weeks. The Blues are coming off back-to-back Merseyside wins over Liverpool and Everton to improve their Premier League 2021 odds of finishing in the top four.
Thomas Tuchel has come in and immediately solidified Chelsea’s defence; they have conceded just two goals in the nine league games in which he has been in charge.
The attack is taking a bit more time to come together, but it is showing signs of progress. Kai Havertz, in particular, impressed as he was given a chance to start against Everton.
Tuchel used Havertz as the main striker, and the young German flourished. His shot led to Ben Godfrey’s own goal, and he also won the penalty which led to their second goal. After a rough start to his first season in England under Frank Lampard, it’s a promising sign that Tuchel has a good idea on how to get the best out of Havertz.
Tuchel has yet to settle of a regular starting XI, and he will likely make some changes against Leeds with their upcoming Champions League match against Atletico Madrid coming up.
But despite the changing personnel, Chelsea seem to play Tuchel’s system quite well, so they will still be tough to break down.
Chelsea are set to make their first visit to Elland Road since 2012, where they won 5-1 in a League Cup tie. Cesar Azpilicueta is the sole remaining player from that Chelsea side. Their last visit to Leeds in the Premier League was in December 2003 and ended in a 1-1 draw.
Chelsea came out on top 3-1 in their first meeting this season at Stamford Bridge. Bamford gave Leeds an early lead, but Chelsea stormed back with goals from Olivier Giroud, Kurt Zouma, and Christian Pulisic.
|Leeds United vs Chelsea||Over 2.50 @ 1.77|
|March 13, 20:30 (GMT+8)|
SBOTOP odds have Chelsea installed as significant 1.78 favourites to come away with another victory. Leeds are 4.50 to end their slump with a win, while a draw is at 3.50.
Only one of Chelsea’s 11 matches with Tuchel in charge has had more two goals. Leeds have also been having some lower scoring games, in part because they are not scoring at the same rate.
But I foresee a bit more goals in this game. Chelsea are getting into a groove under Tuchel, who could be ready to open things up a bit more against Leeds.
The Whites will continue to play their attacking style and give Chelsea some room to exploit. But with Bamford sure to be up for this match, Leeds will get their chances to score as well.
|A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR () BETS ARE WORTH:|
|= €20 (Highly confident)||= €10 (CONFIDENT)||= €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)|
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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