Kick-off: 1730, 26/12/2021
Stadium: Villa Park
TV: Sky Sports
Chelsea are stuttering in the title race and look worth opposing when they face Aston Villa on Boxing Day.
The Blues have dropped points in five of their last eight Premier League fixtures and head to Villa Park on the back of draws with Everton and Wolves.
Villa have won four of their last six matches so this is another tricky test for the European champions and a draw at 3.80 is our first Aston Villa vs Chelsea prediction.
Aston Villa Odds
Villa have faced the other two realistic title contenders in the last few weeks and gave a decent account of themselves on both occasions, losing 2-1 at home to Man City and 1-0 at Liverpool.
Their other four matches under Steven Gerrard all resulted in a victory so Villa will be confident of putting up a better show than when losing 3-0 at Stamford Bridge in September.
They certainly look much better defensively since the former Liverpool captain took over, conceding just five goals in his six matches in charge.
Under 2.5 goals is an option at 2.80.
Last Villa line-up: Martinez, Cash, Targett, Konsa, Mings, Young, Luiz, McGinn, Buendia, Ramsey, Watkins.
Chelsea are in danger of dropping out of the title race after drawing four of their last eight matches as well as losing at West Ham.
They were held to a goalless draw at Wolves last time out with the Covid and injury-hit Blues struggling for fluency.
Defending champions Manchester City have won all eight in that same run, leaving boss Thomas Tuchel lamenting home draws with Burnley, Manchester United and Everton as opposed to Sunday’s deadlock at Wolves.
“The problem is not the points we dropped today,” said Tuchel. “The points that hurt are the points we lost at home against Manchester United, Burnley and Everton. These are the six points that hurt, not today.”
Chelsea were missing as many as eight players due to Covid situations, with several more injured and a clutch of players rushed back into action.
The Blues could only name 14 outfield players in a depleted matchday squad so there are plenty of reasons to oppose them as favourites at Villa Park.
They had gone five matches without a clean sheet prior to the trip to Molineux so we’re backing a 1-1 draw at 7.50 as the last of our Aston Villa vs Chelsea betting tips.
Last Chelsea line-up: Mendy, Rudiger, Alonso, Silva, Chalobah, James, Azpilicueta, Kante, Pulisic, Mount, Ziyech.
|56'||Romelu Lukaku |
(Assist: Callum Hudson-Odoi)
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