The fact that at least two goals have been scored in the last six meetings between West Ham and Chelsea and over 2.5 goals have arrived in four of the last five, makes it understandable as to why a pair of attack-minded players head the betting to be the highest rated by WhoScored in the London derby.
Oscar and Eden Hazard are both priced at 7/1 in this market, but it may pay to focus instead on defenders, if previous games this season are anything to go by.
Looking at average ratings across Chelsea’s away games, four of Chelsea’s top five performers are either goalkeepers or defenders. As for West Ham, five of their six highest-rated players fall into the same two categories.
The Hammers’ highest is also Winston Reid, who remains sidelined with an ankle problem and the club’s defence do look a lot less steady without the New Zealander dictating.
Branislav Ivanovic leads Chelsea’s ratings overall and therefore holds some appeal at 10/1 but at the same price, it is John Terry that stands out the most to be backed.
Terry’s average rating is better in away games than at Stamford Bridge and it is in the field of clearances where he is a class apart from his teammates.
And clearing balls could be especially important against a West Ham outfit that don’t tend to need too much encouragement to get the ball into the box. In their last home game against Aston Villa, West Ham sent in 40 crosses.
Ivanovic has been one of Chelsea’s most consistent performers of late, achieving a rating of at least 7.39 in his last five appearances, which is on the high side.
Given the licence he will have to get forward too, another significant contribution can be expected from Ivanovic, while his ability in the air also make him a contender to get on the scoresheet from a set piece.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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