The early kick-off (12:30) on Saturday sees high flyers Leicester and Chelsea go head-to-head at the King Power Stadium. Both sides will be hoping to cement their places in the Premier League top four spots.
Leicester started the season exceptionally well and carried their good form into the New Year. Since then, however, the Foxes have been through a rough patch recently. Losing to both Southampton & Burnley in the past fortnight, fans will be thankful they’re still holding an eight-point gap over Chelsea, in fourth place. That gap may narrow by the end of February as Leicester face Wolves (A), Man City (H) & Norwich (A).
The honeymoon period Lampard & Chelsea enjoyed has well and truly ended. Since the beginning of December, the Blues have lost to West Ham, Everton, Bournemouth Southampton and Newcastle. Regardless of these results, Chelsea still enjoys a five-point cushion over fifth-place Manchester United.
The last time Chelsea and Leicester met was mid-August when Lampard served his first home match as manager. The game ended 1-1 with Mason Mount & Ndidi both getting on the scoresheet. In the past five meetings between these two teams, there haven’t been more than 2.5 goals. Betfair is offering odds at 6/5 for this pattern to continue. In those five matches, Chelsea has failed to take maximum points off their opposition drawing four times and losing once. The last time Chelsea beat Leicester was September 2017.
Injuries may play a factor in the result as key players are missing for both teams. Brendan Rogers is without Jamie Vardy, and full back, Mendy. Meanwhile, Lampard has stated Reece James, Pulisic, Loftus-Cheek and club top goal-scorer, Tammy Abraham will all miss out on this crucial game. Chelsea has a good youth structure but lack experience, it’s clear additional players need to be to their squad. Chelsea & Abramovich will have to wait until the summer for any new signings as they’re still serving a transfer-ban. Once their ban is lifted, Lampard will surely bring in some big names.
I fancy Chelsea to claim their first win against Leicester in three years. Betfair currently has the odds at 13/8 for Lampard’s men to bag all three points. Without Abraham & Vardy on the pitch, It is unlikely this one will finish in a high-scoring affair, and the score-line could be tight. One player who’s in magnificent form is Ayoze Pérez. The Leicester forward has three goals in his last four outings and is 23/10 to score anytime.