Both sides enter the fixture off the back of midweek Champions League defeats. For Liverpool, another loss followed their latest trip to Naples, with Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli side again proving the European kryptonite to the Supermen of the Premier League. Meanwhile, Chelsea suffered defeat at the hands of crisis club Valencia, who, despite taking the unpopular decision of sacking manager Marcelino, were able to put their European experience to good use and defeat Chelsea on their own turf.
Much has been made of Chelsea’s reliance on youth under Frank Lampard and while the starting XI employed by the former midfielder has been incredibly young by Chelsea’s standards, it’s not groundbreakingly low for the league in general – and it is Southampton who have actually fielded the youngest starting XI in the Premier League this season. However, as mentioned, it is a massive departure for a club that has so often relied on established superstars.
So far, Chelsea have undeniably relied upon their young players. Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori have scored all of Chelsea’s Premier League goals thus far this season. New signing Christian Pulisic has just a single assist to his name while Willian and Pedro are yet to register any meaningful statistics. Chelsea’s youngsters have come up short so far in the big games they’ve faced, losing to both Manchester United and Valencia, and in the European Champions, face undoubtedly their biggest test to date.
Liverpool are the form team of the Premier League; unbeaten for 22 games and having won 14 consecutive games scoring two or more goals, they’ve been imperious. Following Manchester City’s surprise loss to Norwich, they’re also 5 points clear at the top of the table after just 5 games. Jurgen Klopp’s men will not be able to rest on their laurels though, having been 7 points clear of Manchester City back in December ’18 and we all know how that finished.
Defeat to Napoli could, therefore, be considered a good thing for The Reds in the grand scheme of things to come; Liverpool should be under no illusions that they are unbeatable. Losing away to Napoli in Europe is a far from unexpected result, even for the European Champions, and should prevent no obstacle to qualification from the group stage. Liverpool, you would imagine, will be keen to put things right against Chelsea and maintain their gap over Manchester City who face a mounting injury crisis in defence.
Despite being the homes side, Chelsea are not favoured to win and priced at 27/10 (3.70). A draw is also at 27/10 (3.70) while Liverpool are favourites to win at 24/25 (1.96).
Head-to-head in the Premier League, things couldn’t be tighter between the two sides. They’ve played 54 times, with each team winning 20 games (both with 14 home and 6 away wins) and 14 draws. Last season’s corresponding fixture was a 1-1 draw, while Chelsea triumphed 1-0 the season before. But this is a very different Liverpool side to those Chelsea have faced in the past. They’ve got major silverware in the cabinet and are steamrolling their way through the league. We’d back Liverpool to continue their 14-game winning streak, scoring 2 goals or more, and bet on Liverpool to win and over 2.5 goals at 14/9 (2.55).
*Odds subject to change. Odds correct at time of publishing.