CHRIS Graham (@chrisgraham79) takes a look at the Monday night match between West Ham and Chelsea.
West Ham v Chelsea | Monday 20:00 | BT Sport 1
Chelsea’s march to the title looks inevitable and unstoppable. The Blues have lost just one of their last 20 league games and victory here will see their 10 point cushion at the top be restored. However, at 8/13 they look too short on Monday night.
Antonio Conte’s side remind me of Jose Mourinho’s title winning team of 2014/15. Their energy, determination and will to win is in plentiful supply but they lack the wild flair of title winning Chelsea sides from the previous decade.
In recent weeks it’s only their 3-0 win over mentally weak Arsenal that has stood out as a brutal put down of their opponent. Other recent matches have been more of a grind.
Swansea had Chelsea’s measure for parts of their match last week despite going down 3-1 while the Blues struggled to put away Burnley (1-1 draw) and Hull (2-0 win) in recent weeks.
West Ham have found their feet
On recent form, West Ham are capable of giving Chelsea a real test on Monday night. Slaven Bilic’s side have lost just one of their last six matches and have won six of their last 11 Premier League games.
This run of form has seen them escape the relegation rat race and push on to a comfortable mid-table slot. A win here would see them return to the Top 10.
West Ham’s forte last season was taking down the big sides and they achieved some great results against the likes of Chelsea, Man City, Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United. This season that has been completely absent though with eight of their nine wins coming against bottom half sides.
That record against major sides is obviously a worry, as is Michail Antonio’s suspension on Monday night and one can never rule out a London Stadium trashing for the Hammers,
Having said that though, at the prices they need to be respected and 5/1 feels too big for a side starting to finally find their feet this season. I’ll back them with a goal start on the Asian Handicap at 16/19. A one goal loss sees my stake returned.
West Ham v Chelsea – West Ham +1 Asian Handicap (16/19 888 Sport)