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Free football betting tips: Preview of Watford v Chelsea in the Premier League

Watford manager Javi Gracia
Watford manager Javi Gracia

Nick Hext thinks Watford's new approach and Chelsea's reduced options makes no goalscorer the bet for Monday Night Football's Premier League game.

Monday Night Football recommended bets

1pt no goalscorer in Watford v Chelsea at 23/2

0.5pts under 1.5 goals in Watford v Chelsea at 3/1

For details of advised bookmakers and each-way terms, visit our transparent tipping record

Watford v Chelsea (2000 GMT, Sky Sports Main Event)

Chelsea need to bounce back from a surprise 3-0 defeat at home to Bournemouth but I'm expecting Watford to make it a tricky evening's work for the Blues at Vicarage Road.

The Hornets drew 0-0 at Stoke in Javi Gracia's first Premier League match in charge on Wednesday night as a new tactical approach helped secure a point.

Gracia explained after the match that he wants a 4-3-3 formation when Watford are defending but to switch to 3-5-2 when going forward, Gerard Deulofeu and Jose Holebas going wide as the approach alters.

This is a change from the 4-2-3-1 formation used by the Hornets during previous manager Marco Silva's tenure and it had an immediate effect as a 12-game wait for a clean sheet in the league came to an end.

Richarlison, impressive since arriving at Vicarage Road in the summer, plays a more central role in the line-up and star player Abdoulaye Doucoure also gets more freedom to make an impact.

As such, 5/1 for Watford to beat Chelsea is fairly appealing but I think Gracia's focus on strengthening the Hornets' backline make no goalscorer the best bet.

Chelsea are again without Alvaro Morata because of a back injury and the most that can be expected from new signing Olivier Giroud is an appearance from off the bench.

Olivier Giroud
Olivier Giroud

Antonio Conte has seen his options reduced in recent weeks, as much as you can with the number of players under contract with the Blues, and they were well beaten by Bournemouth.

That is the fourth time in eight matches that Chelsea have failed to find the back of the net and the Blues have only won one of their previous five matches on the road.

Watford's new approach kept Stoke quiet last time out and Conte will have to quickly devise a new plan if Chelsea are to enjoy a successful trip to Hertfordshire.

I'm going to take a chance on the Hornets being part of a second goalless encounter on the spin but also take a small saver on under 1.5 goals that is appealing enough at 3/1.

Prediction: Watford 0-0 Chelsea (Sky Bet's odds: 11/1 with Sky Bet)

Posted at 1740 GMT on 02/02/18.

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Most Read Football

Check out today's Paper Talk1

Paper Talk: Chelsea want Suarez

Chelsea eyeing a move for Barca's Denis Suarez as Liverpool target Pascal Gross - all according to Wednesday's back pages.

Our best bets for the Champions League2

Wednesday's Champions League tips

The final matches of the 2018/19 Champions League group stages take place on Wednesday evening. George Pitts has four best bets.

Lucas Moura celebrates after scoring against Barcelona3

Tottenham through after Barca draw

Lucas Moura's dramatic late goal sent Tottenham through to the Champions League knockout stages by earning a 1-1 draw at Barcelona.

Mohamed Salah scores for Liverpool against Napoli4

Salah strikes as Liverpool progress

Liverpool have qualified for the knockout stage of the Champions League after beating Napoli 1-0 in their Group C match at Anfield.

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa5

The EFL needs a Farke and Bielsa

With comments this week suggesting Daniel Farke and Marcelo Bielsa are bad for English football, Tom Carnduff believes that they should be celebrated.

Football Tips

Our best bets for the Champions League

Wednesday's Champions League tips

The final matches of the 2018/19 Champions League group stages take place on Wednesday evening. George Pitts has four best bets.

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