Chelsea to get scoring after break at Sparta Prague
Scoring the most goals in the group stages of the Champions League was not enough to see Chelsea qualify for the knockout stages of the competition, but if these goals are continue in the Europa League, they are likely to be in the second half against Sparta Prague.
Chelsea netted 16 goals in their six group games and the goals have continued domestically of late, as they have scored at least twice in seven of their last eight fixtures.
It is 4/5 that Chelsea score at least two again in the Czech Republic, but the better betting proposition appears to be the 5/4 that they score more goals after the interval compared to the opening period.
In their nine away games since returning from the Club World Cup, Chelsea have failed to score a single goal in the opening 30 minutes.
They have scored 17 second-half goals in this period and in five games more goals have come in the latter period over the first.
Chelsea are 4/6 to win away to Sparta Prague and with a slightly hectic fixture list upcoming, Rafa Benitez is likely to name a strong team here in the hope of securing a comfortable triumph that will allow him to rest players for the Stamford Bridge return leg.
However, Sparta are unbeaten in 11 European home games dating back to a Champions League play-off game in 2010/11.
They are 9/2 to win this, with the draw priced at 5/2. But given their unbeaten home record, a price of just greater than 11/10 in the double chance market for Sparta Prague to win or draw may have some appeal.
With Demba Ba cup-tied having already played for Newcastle in the Europa League, the onus will fall on Fernando Torres to lead the line and he is available at 6/5 to strike at any time in the 90 minutes.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date