Total Goals Betting Tip
Chelsea will look to cement themselves at the top of the Group L table when they host last-place Hungarian squad Videoton at Stamford Bridge on Thursday night. The Blues battled to a 1-0 victory in Thessaloniki in the opener, while their guests fell 2-0 at home against BATE Borisov.
Chelsea have had an incredibly strong start to their season, as they sit just two points off the lead in the Premier League table after seven matches. They are undefeated in all nine fixtures across competitions this campaign, having beat Liverpool 2-1 last Wednesday in Carabao Cup action before drawing them 1-1 in Saturday’s league matchup. They opened their Europa League efforts with a tight 1-0 away win at PAOK while sporting a lineup that saw star player Eden Hazard rested. Playing in front of home supporters has produced a 11W 4D 2L record in their past 17 fixtures. They have never lost at Stamford Bridge in the Europa League, maintaining a 6W 2D record dating back to 2001. During those fixtures, they scored at least two goals in five of the games, while holding opponents to one or less on every single occasion.
Videoton have had a solid yet disappointing start to their domestic season based on their usual standards, sitting in third-place with 15 points after eight matches. They had already played eight European fixtures before Matchday 1 in their failed attempt to qualify for the Champions League. Those encounters saw them defeated Dudelange, Ludogorets and Malmo on aggregate before falling to AEK Athens 3-2 in the play-off round. Their first match of the Europa League saw them manage just two shots on goal in a disappointing 2-0 home loss to BATE. They have only managed to win two of eighteen away EL matches over the past 12 years, losing 11 and drawing five. They have been blanked on nine occasions, while giving up at least two goals nine times, as well.
These two teams have never faced each other in any competition and this will be the Hungarian squad’s first-ever trip to England.
Maurizio Sarri was far from pleased with his club’s close 1-0 victory against PAOK, criticising his side afterwards for failing to capitalise on so many goalscoring opportunities. Having just come off a tightly-packed week with two fixtures against Liverpool and a tough matchup with Southampton on Sunday, Sarri will likely rotate some of his key pieces in this outing. He should stick with his familiar 4-3-3 formation, with Alvaro Morata getting another start in the central-attacking role. With Pedro expected to be out, Victor Moses should get the opportunity to start on the wing, while Willian could be on the other side after scoring Chelsea’s winner in their first match. Ross Barkley should feature in a midfield that may welcome Cesc Fabregas back to starting role after sitting out Saturday’s game. In the back, Gary Cahill and Andreas Christensen should feature in the centre-back positions after sitting out the last Liverpool match.
Finally, the lack of opposing firepower means that Willy Caballero should make another appearance in goal for Chelsea.
Manager Marko Nikolic knows that Chelsea will dominate possession for the 90 minutes, so he will be likely to remain with the 4-3-2-1 formation that he sent forth against BATE. The extra line of defensive presence should help his back line cope with what will surely be offensive pressure from whistle-to-whistle. When Vidi do get the ball, they will look to Serbian forward Marko Scepovic, who has four goals this season, to manufacture some offence. The key piece to the puzzle for Nikolic’s squad to get anything out of this match will be a man who made his Anderlecht debut against Chelsea over 13 years ago, defender Roland Juhasz. The former Belgian champion and Hungarian international is the squad’s most experienced player against strong European competition and will look to do his best to lead his colleagues in the face of the Blues’ overwhelming attack.
FootyAcca Team News
Sarri will be without forwards Pedro, who suffered a shoulder injury against PAOK, and Ruben Loftus-Cheeks. While there are no other injuries to report, the club’s busy schedule all but guarantees that Hazard, Mateo Kovacic, Olivier Giroud and N’Golo Kante are left off the starting XI.
Videoton has no injuries to report, but Nikolic will have some decisions to make after having shuffled his lineup to three straight wins following the BATE loss. He brought in defensive midfielder Mate Patkai and defender Vinicius into the lineup, who have contributed to two clean sheets in the past three matches.
Most coaches would be happy for their team to make a trip across Europe and escape with an away victory. Not Maurizio Sarri. Despite walking away from their first tie with three points, the Italian voiced his displeasure with the Blues’ lack of finishing against PAOK.
Sending out the same team on Thursday, the likes of Morata and Willian will be looking to impress their new manager and get into his good graces. This means that goals should come for Chelsea against their overpowered Hungarian foes.
Our FootyAcca Europa League betting tip is Over 1.5 Total 1st Half Goals.
Published on: Oct 4, 2018 at 09:20
See how the match unfolds below with our Match Day Updates showing the starting 11 teams, goals, cards and subs.