CARDS specialist Chris Goodwin (@CGeorgeGamble) picks out his favourite fancies from Saturday's showdown between Chelsea and Southampton.
Chelsea vs Southampton | Saturday 17th October 2020, 15:00 | BT Sport Box Office
Frank Lampard and his new-look Chelsea side welcome Southampton to Stamford Bridge in what promises to be a tight affair.
Last time out, Chelsea breezed past Crystal Palace 4-0 at the Bridge, thanks to a second-half demolition. Ben Chilwell and Kurt Zouma saw the Blues take the initiative before two Jorginho penalties put the result beyond all doubt.
It’s interesting to note that despite the heavy investment in their attacking line, their top two goalscorers, so far this season, are a defensive midfielder and a centre back. This will need to change if Lampard is to guide his side to another top-four finish.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s guests had a shaky start to their season, losing their first two games to Crystal Palace and Tottenham respectively, but have recovered by claiming maximum points from their last two. They can take confidence knowing that they are capable of winning this fixture, just as they did last season with an inspired performance.
- Receive 8.5 fouls per game on average when playing at home.
- Commit 13.5 fouls per game on average when playing at home.
- Have won SEVEN of their last EIGHT EPL home games, scoring 18 in that period, conceding FOUR and keeping FIVE clean sheets.
- Since the start of the last season, no side has conceded fewer home EPL goals than Chelsea (18).
- Under 2.5 goals has landed in Chelsea’s last FOUR home games against Southampton in all competitions.
- The Blues have scored at least TWO goals in FIVE of their last SIX EPL matches.
- Receive 10.5 fouls per game on average when playing away.
- Commit 10.5 fouls per game on average when playing away.
- Won this fixture 2-0 last season. Will be looking to achieve back-to-back away victories against Chelsea for the first time since 1985.
- Are on the cusp of winning THREE consecutive EPL matches for the first time since 2016.
- Have faced just over SEVEN shots per game on average so far this season – the fewest in the league.
- Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are in contention to make their first starts of the season.
- Ben Chilwell is available despite an injury on international duty.
- Thiago Silva is set to be rested ahead of their UCL clash with Sevilla next week.
- Goalkeeper Edouard Mendy suffered a thigh strain whilst playing for Senegal and is unlikely to play. Kepa Arrizabalaga should come back into the team.
- Stuart Armstrong returned to training Friday but will not be available for this game.
- Nathan Redmond could make his first EPL start of the season.
- New signing Theo Walcott may start due to the absence of Armstrong and Djenepo.
- New signing Ibrahim Diallo will have to wait a bit longer before making his first start for the Saints.
Peter Bankes awarded 55 yellows last season in just 11 games that he officiated. Combined with the 2018/19 season, he has awarded 185 cautions in just 40 appearances, which give us an average of 4.63 cards per-game over the past two campaigns.
My first pick is Under 4 Goals, Over 0 Southampton Cards (5/6 Bet365). There have been Under 2.5 Goals in the last four matches between these two at Stamford Bridge and I expect that run to stretch to five.
The Saints rely heavily on Danny Ings to find the net and he will have very few chances to score in this one as Chelsea dominate the game. Southampton also concedes the fewest shots per-game so far this season and will be resolute in defence.
The side from the south coast conceded approximately the third-highest fouls per-game last season and will be putting in a number of tackles to keep Chelsea’s offensive line at bay. With Bankes overseeing this one, I expect him to brandish a card or two in the direction of Hausenhuttl’s men.
My second pick is Chelsea 20+ Booking Points and Southampton 10+ Booking Points (13/8 Bet365).
Last season, of Chelsea’s 19 games at home they picked up two cards in 10 of them (53%).
I’m actually expecting this to be a fairly scrappy game as the Saints look to keep shots from the hosts to a minimal, combined with the referee in charge, I think we could see a few cards shown.
With the price on offer, I’m happy to have a point on it.