Chelsea can’t afford too many more stalemates

Everton's Tim Howard is chasing back-to-back clean sheets against Chelsea

Everton’s Tim Howard is chasing back-to-back clean sheets against Chelsea

With 12 games remaining in the Premier League season (or 13 for four of the league’s 20 teams), José Mourinho’s Chelsea sit at the summit of an increasingly congested top four.

The London club are unbeaten in their 13 games at Stamford Bridge, with title challengers Arsenal, ManchesterCity and Liverpool each suffering one home defeat so far this term, and the quartet know that any slip-up between now and the end of the season could be costly.

Chelsea v Everton Betting Odds:

Chelsea win – 1.55

Draw – 3.70

Everton win – 6.00

(All odds provided by GR88.com are accurate as of today and subject to change)

They have failed to score in only five of their 26 outings so far, including away games at Arsenal and Manchester United which they seemed to enter in the knowledge that a goalless draw would be satisfactory.

The other three include the home draw against West Ham, in which the hosts found visiting goalkeeper Adrián in imperious form, and an away match in November when they had the misfortune of getting in the way of Newcastle’s annual ‘can they keep this going? No, of course not, they’re managed by Alan Pardew’ terrifying run of form.

But it is the fifth of these five shutouts which comes to the fore this weekend, as Mourinho’s men host an Everton outfit looking to record their first league double over Chelsea in the Premier League era.

Questions were asked about the capabilities of Everton’s new manager Roberto Martinez before the season, and when the two sides met in September the jury was still out, with the Toffees having drawn their first three games.

However a 1-0 win through Steven Naismith’s goal settled any nagging doubts and put the Merseysiders on course for a solid season where they have in many ways pushed on from the David Moyes era, outshining their former manager in both entertainment and league position.

Scottish forward Naismith might have seemed an unlikely goalscorer, but this fixture has had a habit over the years of thrusting lesser names into the limelight. Former Everton prodigies Francis Jeffers and Danny Cadamarteri have both scored against Chelsea in the Premier League (Cadamarteri did it twice!), while one of Sam Dalla Bona’s six Chelsea goals came at GoodisonPark.

However with Chelsea conceding just nine times at home this campaign and Everton’s 14 away goals representing a lower total than 17th-placed West Bromwich Albion, I would not be surprised if this is another low-scoring game, however one goal could well be enough for the home side.

And at GR88.com, a fourth goalless draw of the season for Chelsea means money back on losing pre-match scorecast, correct score or half-time/full-time bets at GR88.com. Details of the Nil-Nil Money Back Offer can be found in GR88’s ‘promotions’ section.

Betting Instinct Tip: Under 1.5 goals is 3.50 with GR88.com

tvTOM VICTOR (editor)  is the editor and co-founder of Betting Instinct. He has written for a variety of sports sites in the past, including JustFootball, Footy Matters and BeNeFoot.

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