What the f*** is happening at Chelsea?
After winning the league by eight points last season, losing just three times, keeping 17 clean sheets, and genuinely dictating the pace at the top of the table, Chelsea have imploded since losing the Community Shield against Arsenal on August 2.
Now Jose Mourinho’s men sit 15th in the league, they’ve already lost six matches, and they have just one win in the last eight games in all competitions. The Special One is falling out with team doctors, the press, the referees, and he’s getting used to a weekly slap on the wrists from the FA for one of his outbursts.
While newspaper’s will point to Chelsea’s relative bad form in comparison to their own (limited) history, we decided to dig a little deeper into just how bad they’ve been in the league this year. Sit back and relax, as we go full troll:
- Diego Costa has lost the ball through a poor touch 34 times this season – the second worst record in the Premier League behind Southampton’s Sadio Mane
- Cesc Fabregas has attempted 46 tackles this year, and almost half of them (48 per cent) have been unsuccessful
- Fabregas has also played 100 inaccurate short passes this season – averaging a loose short pass every eight-and-a-half minutes
- Cesc has also managed to waste 13 free-kicks, more than any other outfield player in the top flight
- Asmir Begovic has had to face 52 shots on target this season, he has saved just 30 of them – conceding 42 per cent of accurate attempts on goal
- As a team Chelsea have made 112 unsuccessful dribbles – only Newcastle and Aston Villa have made more in the top flight
- 83 per cent of Pedro’s shots have been off target or blocked
- Branislav Ivanovic hasn’t hit the target with any of his 11 shots the season
- Pedro, Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Willian, Eden Hazard and Oscar have had a combined 85 shots, and have a cumulative total of just six goals. Jamie Vardy has 11 goals for Leicester on his own
- At their current points per game average, Chelsea are set to finish the season on 38 points – a final tally that would have left them no better than 15th in the last 10 years, and would have relegated them in 2010/11
- In the last decade of Premier League football, of the other teams that were 15th after 11 games like Chelsea are now, three were relegated and the highest finishers were Birmingham who came ninth in 2009/10
This Saturday evening Chelsea must travel to Stoke, and while the Pensioners have won just one of the last five, the Potters have lost just the one. The Britannia Stadium has been somewhat of a fortress in recent years, with Stoke picking up five wins and a draw in their home games against the top eight last season – and they can upset the odds against a Chelsea side in more turmoil than David Cameron’s career.
Despite their appalling current form, Chelsea go into the game favourites at . The traders in Power Tower obviously fear a Lazarus-like resurrection from Chelsea, while the fact that Chelsea’s Premier League record against Stoke reads won 12, drawn two, lost one, is clearly a factor.
But if Chelsea have been bad overall this season, their form on the road has been simply shocking. There have been defeats to Manchester City, Everton and West Ham this campaign, while Chelsea needed two goals in the last 11 minutes to scrape a point at St James’ Park against Newcastle. The Pensioners’ only league win away from home this season was a 3-2 win against West Brom more than two months ago.
That might have you tempted in by the on offer for Stoke draw no bet but we’re backing the draw at , and more specifically the 1-1 draw at .
These two sides met at the Britannia two weeks ago in the League Cup, with a last minute strike from Loic Remy earning Chelsea a 1-1 draw, before Stoke eventually came out on top in the penalty shootout. Most notably however is that in the league this season both teams have scored in eight of Chelsea’s 11 matches – it’s that both teams find the onion bag on Saturday evening.
In games where both teams have scored, Chelsea have won just one of eight (the West Brom clash) while in the four Stoke games where both sides have scored, three have finished level – a 1-1 draw with Norwich and a pair of 2-2 draws with Tottenham and high-flying Leicester.
Eight of Stoke’s 11 games this season have featured under 2.5 goals, including their last four on the spin, so we’re not expecting a glut of high-scoring action to carry us through Saturday evening. It’s odds-on at that there’ll be under 2.5 goals at the Britannia, but the best bet looks to be a 1-1 draw and yet more pressure on the Special One’s shoulders.
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