Wolves will be looking to continue their positive record against top-six teams as they travel to Chelsea. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.
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Chelsea v Wolves (Sky Sports Premier League)
- 1405 GMT kick-off, Stamford Bridge
Chelsea may be the odds-on favourites for victory but Wolves seem to be a side that enjoy the opportunity to test themselves against the very best.
Remember, they beat the Blues in their meeting at Molineux. Nuno Espirito Santo’s side have picked up results against Manchester City, Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham this season.
Wolves beat the latter on that list at Wembley, showing that they have little issue in travelling away to those in the top six.
Another victory is a big ask here, particularly with performances and results beginning to pick up once again for Chelsea under Maurizio Sarri.
That’s coupled with their excellent record at Stamford Bridge this season. A defeat to Leicester being the only time they have failed to pick up at least a point in front of their own fans.
Wanderers were recently beaten by a Huddersfield side who were overdue a win, but I am not convinced that will create a lasting effect for their games on the road.
This Wolves side are a joy to watch when they are at their best. A lot of observers point to the amount of money spent, but ultimately it’s built a team that is, at the end of the day, good at football.
It’s why they’re flying in the Premier League on their first season back. Chelsea will be eager to preserve their fine home record, but Wolves will make it far from easy.
Score prediction: Chelsea 2-2 Wolves (Sky Bet odds: 16/1)
A real potential for entertainment in this one with two sides who have a lot of attacking power. Diogo Jota is enjoying life in the top flight and has formed a decent partnership with Raul Jimenez. Wolves also have the luxury of a very interchangeable midfield to suit a certain game. That could be key for gaining a point on Sunday afternoon.
Unfortunately for Matt Doherty, playing at right-back often means you don’t get the glamorous praise that a scoring striker does. Make no mistake about it though, Doherty is a star in this Wolves side. In a system that looks to go forward and create chances right from the very back, the Ireland international is perfectly suited for the way they want to play.
Lining up in the wing-back role, we often see him playing on the wing when Wolves are in and around the opposition box. Counter-attack will be key for Wolves here and they have the ability to break out quickly when required. It’s one of the many positives that comes with Doherty. A solid defensive player who has the ability to contribute goals, so 5/2 for one or more shots on target is generous.
Best bet: Matt Doherty to score anytime at 14/1
My eye was immediately caught by this price on offer from Unibet. We’ve spoken above about Doherty’s attacking qualities and a price of 14s is just too good to turn down for this one.
Yes, they are away at a top-four contender, but counter attack will be key and we should expect to see Doherty have a couple of opportunities to drive down the right flank and create a Wolves attack.
He has six goals in total this season and, in all honesty, is probably due another. Five shots across his last three starts shows that he is getting opportunities towards goal. This price stands out, but the value remains in the general price of 9/1 in this market.
- Chelsea have won all four of their Premier League home games against Wolves, scoring 14 goals and conceding just two.
- Wolves are looking to do the league double over Chelsea for the first time since the 1974-75 top-flight campaign, when Chelsea were relegated.
- Wolves could become the first promoted team to do the Premier League double over Chelsea since Charlton Athletic in the 2000-01 campaign.
- Wolves have won more points against the ‘big six’ sides (9) than any of the other 14 sides in the Premier League this season and have already avoided defeat away at Arsenal (1-1), Manchester United (1-1) and Tottenham Hotspur (3-1).
- Chelsea have lost just one of their last 53 home league games against promoted sides (W44 D8), losing against Bournemouth in December 2015.
- Chelsea are looking to win three consecutive Premier League games for the first time since September, when they won their opening five of the season. At home, they’ve won their last three by an aggregate score of 9-1.
- Wolves are unbeaten in their five Premier League games in London this season (W3 D2). They last had a longer unbeaten run in the capital in the top-flight between November 1972 and November 1974 (11 games).
- Since the start of last season, Chelsea’s Eden Hazard has been directly involved in 10 goals in 10 Premier League games against promoted sides (7 goals, 3 assists), scoring or assisting a goal in each of his four such games this term.
- Wolves Raul Jimenez has been directly involved in seven goals in his last seven Premier League games (5 goals, 2 assists).
- Raul Jimenez has scored 11 Premier League goals this season – the most scored by a Wolves player in a single campaign in the competition is 12 (Steven Fletcher in 2011-12).
Odds correct as of 1700 GMT on 09/03/19