Chelsea v Crystal Palace - Tough Task ahead for Eagles

Published on March 29th, 2017 1:57 pm EST
Written By: Cian Murray
Antonio Conte with a big smile on his face.  At a press conference. These two London sides are going into the last few of games of the season with very different aims. Chelsea are hoping to continue their stride towards the title, while for Palace, survival is the prime objective.

Sam Allardyce and his team travel to Stamford Bridge this weekend knowing that they face an absolutely monumental task; no side has defeated The Blues since early January and Antonio Conte's men have shown no signs of slowing down.

The Eagles are involved in a relegation dogfight, sitting just four points above the drop zone, so it is essential that they pick up as many points as possible between now and the end of the season. Allardyce will be hoping they can take even a solitary point from this game, but his task hasn't been made any easier by the fact Chelsea have a fully-fit squad.

Diego Costa, Thibault Courtois and Eden Hazard all took knocks over the international break, but are set to return on time for Saturday. Meanwhile, several of Palace's key players look set to miss out, with both Patrick van Aanholt and James McArthur both major doubts.

Anything can happen in the wonderful game of football, but the bookmakers aren't giving Palace much of a chance. They reckon that Allardyce's men will come away empty handed and are offering 10/1 to any punter who thinks otherwise and is willing to back Palace.

Understandably, Chelsea's odds are almost unbackable. They are 2/7 to continue their rout to the Premier League title by taking all three points. The draw is 4/1, but we just can't see it happening.

If you are looking for value, the place to start is the handicap market. Chelsea are around 5/6 to win by more than one goal and although this is still odds on, we think it represents value.

Another odds on bet that may still represent value is the 'win to nil' market. Chelsea have won the last two games between these sides and in both cases, Crystal Palace were unable to find the net.

If they do the same on Saturday, you could be getting paid on 8/11 odds.

Diego Costa can't stop knocking the goals in this season, having already scored 17 in the Premier League. He is 21/10 to get the first on Saturday, while his partner in crime, Eden Hazard is 7/2.

If you want to go against us and back a Palace player to get the first goal, then the obvious place to start is their big Belgian, Christian Benteke. He is 10/1 to get the first goal.

Cult hero Wilfred Zaha has arguably been Palace's player of the season this year and he is priced at 16/1 to score first.

However, we just can't see Palace getting many chances against Conte's stern side, so our tip is to stick with the Costa to score first and Chelsea to win by more than one.

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