Chelsea begin life post-Potter this evening when the Blues take on fellow underperformers Liverpool at Stamford Bridge in what promises to be an enthralling Premier League tussle in the capital.
The hosts can move to within a point of Liverpool with a victory under caretaker boss Bruno Saltor later on, however, each of the last five encounters between the clubs have ended all square and margins could be wafer-thin again in the giants’ latest skirmish.
You know the drill by now – I’ve compiled a stats pack for this evening’s showpiece showdown below which should arm you with everything you need to attack the bet builder markets with more confidence. Use the info alongside the advice in my Stats Pack Guide to boost your chances of success.
Stand-in boss Bruno Saltor is expected to make changes to the Chelsea team that lost 2-0 at home to Aston Villa in Graham Potter’s ill-fated final match in charge. Wesley Fofana could be drafted into the Blues backline, while Mason Mount could start for the first time since February 18th.
Thiago Silva, Cezar Azpilicueta, Edouard Mendy and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are all still injured, though Raheem Sterling will hope to shake off an issue in time to play some part against his former employers.
Jurgen Klopp was understandably displeased about his players’ performance in Liverpool’s 4-1 reverse at Man City last time out, though the German coach have little option but to stick with the crux of the same side this evening at Stamford Bridge.
Luis Diaz isn’t quite ready yet, so Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo could join Mohamed Salah in attack. James Milner could come into midfield to form a combative trio alongside Fabinho and Jordan Henderson.
Chelsea’s underlying stats have been sub-par right across the board this season and Graham Potter really has little cause for complaint following his dismissal. The Blues have toiled badly in attack since August, lodging a meagre 1.04 goals per 90 from an xG of 1.28 per game.
They rank 12th in the division for shots and ninth for shots on target per 90, and just two clubs have been picking up more bookings at home than Chelsea. Only three teams have conceded fewer goals than the Londoners however, and 61% of their league games have featured under 2.5 goals as a consequence.
Worryingly for Blues fans, caretaker boss Bruno Saltor is a dedicated Potter disciple, so a change in tactical tack and an increase in excitement levels might not be forthcoming in the short term at least. Under 2.5 goals can be backed at odds of 19/20 later on. Each of the last three meetings between Chelsea and Liverpool ended goalless.
Liverpool’s attacking statistics still have some gloss, but defensively, the Reds have been a bit of a shambles this term and having come close to winning four trophies just a year ago, the Merseysiders are virtually unrecognisable this time around in comparison.
Jurgen Klopp’s strugglers rank 12th best in the Premier League for xG against (1.40 p/90) and they have dropped points in a staggering 11 out of 14 away assignments in the division so far. Liverpool have been light on cards overall, though they picked up four bookings to Chelsea’s one when the teams last met in January, and the visitors are keenly priced at 1/2 to amass over 1.5 cards again later on.
Player Shots and Shots on Target
Technically gifted loanee, Joao Felix, has been a shining light during a gloomy period for Chelsea and the Portuguese whiz can always be relied upon to produce dazzling moments in games for the Blues. The 23-year-old is 4/11 to have 1+ shots on target this evening – a feat he has achieved in seven of his last nine appearances for Chelsea.
Elsewhere, Kai Havertz, who has been good for at least two accurate attempts in each of his last three runouts for Chelsea could be a nice option at 1/3 in the same market as Felix. The German attacker has been hitting 1.09 shots on target per 90 overall this term.
Liverpool managed to muster just four attempts in total when they lost 4-1 at City last weekend and Mohamed Salah registered the Reds’ only strike on target. The ever-reliable Egyptian can be had at 2/5 to clock 1+ accurate efforts later on.
Darwin Nunez’s figures for the campaign are undoubtedly eye-catching, but it was Cody Gakpo who turned more heads when Liverpool last faced Chelsea. The Dutchman had a whopping seven attempts against the Blues in January and the 23-year-old could be one to consider at 5/6 to have 3+ shots or 4/7 to have 1+ shots on target this evening.
Player Goals and Assists
Reliable goal-getters have been thin on the ground for Chelsea this season and they are just one of two clubs in the Premier League’s current top 11 (alongside Brighton) without a single player in double-figure goals for the campaign.
Leading marksman Kai Havertz, who has notched three times in his last four appearances in all competitions for the Blues, has scored against Liverpool before and the languid German forward is 21/10 to make his mark anytime again today.
With 19 goal contributions in 27 starts, Mohamed Salah has been earning every penny of his big bucks new contract at Liverpool this season and the Egyptian international, who netted a consolation at City last weekend, is an interesting prospect at 11/10 to either score or assist again today.
Darwin Nunez meanwhile, scored his last four goals in big games against Newcastle, Real Madrid and Manchester United and his penchant for delivering on the grand stage means he should come into consideration at 21/10 to net anytime again later on.
Chelsea and Liverpool have been posting very similar average possession per game stats this term, though interestingly, the Blues dominated more of the ball at Anfield in January (52.5%-47.5%) and they could have the lion’s share of it again today.
Enzo Fernandez (83.2 passes p/90) has been pulling the strings in midfield since his mega-money switch from Benfica and the Argentinean schemer is 2/5 to play 70+ passes today. Chief distributor at the back, Benoit Badiashile (82.1) is also 2/5 in the same market.
Liverpool’s first-choice defensive quartet, Van Dijk (76.4), Alexander-Arnold (70.0), Konate (64.0) and Robertson (60.1), have seen more of the ball than most for the Reds this term, though Dutch centre-half Van Dijk looks like the pick of the bunch today.
The 31-year-old has cleared 70 passes in four of his last six Premier League starts and he can be added to your docket to beat the same target at 8/15 at Stamford Bridge. Van Dijk missed Liverpool’s 0-0 draw with Chelsea at Anfield in January but he played 81 passes when he last faced the Blues in the 2022 Carabao Cup Final.
Chelsea Cards and Fouls
Kalidou Koulibaly has endured a somewhat awkward maiden campaign for Chelsea as evidenced by his record of committing 1.23 fouls per 90 so far, and the Senegalese international looks like decent value at 3/10 to sin at least once today. Tough tackler Reece James also piques my interest at 8/15 in the same market. The 23-year-old has exacted fouls in three of his last four starts in the league.
Kai Havertz likes to put the squeeze on opposing centre-halves for Chelsea as part of his remit to press from the front and the German, who has been clocking a sizable 2.26 fouls p/90 is available at 4/7 to commit at least two more later on.
Cody Gakpo’s output in terms of goals continues to be modest for Liverpool though the January recruit is adept at winning free kicks for the Reds. Gakpo has been fouled 2.32 times per 90 minutes since his arrival from PSV and his clever movement could unsettle Chelsea’s Kalidou Koulibaly.
To Gakpo’s left, the bristly Darwin Nunez (fouled 0.86 times p/90) faces a tough physical battle with Reece James on the flank, while Ibrahima Konate – who has been kicked 0.98 times per 90 – could be embroiled in an altercation or two with Chelsea foul-machine, Kai Havertz.
Match-Ups to watch
Kalidou Koulibaly vs Cody Gakpo
Kai Havertz vs Ibrahima Konate
Reece James vs Darwin Nunez
Liverpool Cards and Fouls
Liverpool went on a bit of a fouling spree when they last locked horns with Chelsea in January and a hefty six of their players committed two or more fouls in that 0-0 draw at Anfield. The Reds should play with heightened aggression again today, and I expect their foul count to be high again.
Fabinho, Trent-Alexander Arnold and Jordan Henderson can be relied upon to commit their fair share at Stamford Bridge. Fabinho, who has collected five cards in his last ten appearances for Liverpool, is very backable at 13/5 to enter the official’s book again. Alexander-Arnold and Henderson meanwhile, are 1/3 and 3/10 respectively to commit at least on foul each.
Joao Felix (fouled 2.24 times per 90) continues to be kicked from pillar to post in a blue shirt and the gifted schemer should drift into the spaces occupied by the cynical Fabinho today. Just behind Felix, key Chelsea playmaker Enzo Fernandez (1.39) should have the hard-running Jordan Henderson for close company in midfield.
If Mason Mount earns a recall, he will be keen to test Trent Alexander-Arnold’s notoriously watery defensive skillset. Fouls could be a by-product of that all Three Lions’ head-to-head down the left.
Match-Ups to watch
Fabinho vs Joao Felix
Trent Alexander-Arnold vs Mason Mount
Jordan Henderson vs Enzo Fernandez
My Bet Builder Picks of the Pack
I’ve picked out my value bet builder selections for all four of tonight’s Premier League games with four smashing bets. You can find them on my Live Tips Page.