Defences could emerge on top when Palace host Chelsea, live on Sky Sports 1, on Sunday.
Crystal Palace are a deserved fifth halfway through the season while Chelsea are an equally deserving 14th. In fact, Chelsea have benefitted from the most own goals and second most goals from set pieces this term and quite possibly deserve to be even lower in the table. With that in mind it’s hard to justify how the Blues are quite as short as they are.
Palace tend to be a better side on the road but their home form has been improving and they had the better of a 0-0 here with Swansea a few days ago. Defensively they’ve been excellent this season, with Spurs the only side to concede fewer, and have conceded just twice in their last five home matches. They’ve already beaten Chelsea this term and have won three of their last five home games against bottom-half teams while again conceding just twice.
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Chelsea were lucky to get a point at Old Trafford on Monday but it’s been just five wins in 19 matches this season and four of those have come against teams in the bottom eight. Their only win in their last 10 away matches came a fair while ago at West Brom and they’ve lost six of those games while they’ve failed to score in five. The good news is that Diego Costa should return but he’s not scored an away goal since that trip to the Baggies in August and it’s currently difficult to see where the goals will come from. Moreover, their last 12 trips to top-half teams have resulted in just two wins and six defeats so Palace have to be backed here, though we’d go for the Draw No Bet to keep some cover with Yohan Cabaye suspended and Yannick Bolasie injured.
Six of Palace’s last eight home games have had fewer than three goals while three of Chelsea’s last four on the road have had fewer than two and while we can’t see where the goals will come for Chelsea the absence of Palace’s best two players means they may also struggle. As such we slightly prefer the goals market, with Under 1.5 Goals worth a shot.
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