Chelsea v Southampton: Saints little cause to fear hosts

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Stamford Bridge has not been the happiest of hunting grounds for Rafa Benitez since he took over at Chelsea and this should give relegation-threatened Southampton all the encouragement they need in their quest to take precious a point or better back to the south coast.

Saints are a monstrous 9/1 to win this rearranged fixture, which doesn’t look all that bad when you consider the fact that the Blues have been beaten in their previous two home games in all competitions without scoring a goal.

With the home win priced at 1/4, you might want to look elsewhere in search of a good value bet, such as the draw, for instance, which is available at 5/1. Chelsea have failed to win four of their previous six home matches across three competitions and this price will enable a serious profit.

Nigel Adkins’ men picked up a crucial win at Aston Villa last time out which saw them move two points clear of the relegation zone. They have only been beaten in two of their previous 11 Premier League matches now and, having seen QPR triumph at the Bridge earlier in the month, they have no reason to fear the Blues, despite the fact that they boast the division’s joint-best defensive record.

They have the form striker required to breach such a strong unit in Rickie Lambert, whose penalty at Villa Park last time was his third goal in four league outings. He can be backed at 8/1 to open the scoring which seems a very reasonable price given the threat he poses from free-kicks around the box, as well as his killer instinct in it and four of his last five strikes have broken the deadlock.

If you’re intent on backing the home team here, a good value punt is the 4/5 that says they win with Demba Ba on the scoresheet.
The Senegalese hitman netted a brace against this opposition when making his Chelsea debut in their recently contested FA Cup clash and is expected to overcome a hamstring complaint to feature in this game.

All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date

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