Sunderland vs Chelsea: Chelsea new-boy is key to ending drought

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It’s been seven years since Chelsea scored fewer than five goals in their opening three games and Andre Villas-Boas’ start to Chelsea life has certainly been understated.

However Sunderland have managed to find the net just the once in 390 minutes of competitive action this season and on the basis of those two stats, backing under 2.5 goals looks tempting at 8/11.

Except Juan Manuel Mata will be handed his first Chelsea start at the Stadium of Light and the Spaniard’s freshness could be the key to Chelsea opening the floodgates.

Match Odds

Chelsea have won 12 of their last 13 matches with Sunderland and it’s fair to say they look banker material this weekend at 7/10 to win.

Sunderland are yet to win this season and while they upset the Blues at Stamford Bridge last season, Steve Bruce is yet to see his new signings gel and a lack of firepower means it’s hard to look past a Chelsea win.

The Mackems have also lost seven of their last eight home games this season and so back a Chelsea win at half-time and Chelsea win at full-time at 11/8.

Total Goals

Sunderland have conceded two or more goals in seven of their last nine home games.

Frank Lampard has created the most chances in the Premier League this season and with Juan Manuel Mata ready to start for Chelsea, Fernando Torres can expect plenty of chances on Saturday.

A 3-0 win for Chelsea is available at 11/1 but they have kept just two cleans sheets at the Stadium Of Light in 11 Premier League clashes so take the 10/1 for a 3-1 scoreline.

Mata is 7/1 to score the first goal and mark a dream debut but Torres should profit from the new creativity on the flank and the Spaniard can get his first goal of the season and is 1/1 to score any time.

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Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.