Newcastle may have sprung a surprise defeat on Chelsea back in November, but things on Tyneside have turned ugly since and now the patched-up Toon look set to stumble straight into the jaws of a hungry blue shark at fortress Stamford Bridge.
By inflicting Manchester City’s first home Premier League loss of the season last time out, Chelsea showed just how far they’ve evolved already under Jose Mourinho’s second coming.
It was a warning to the rest, that the Blues are beginning to resemble the ruthlessly efficient winning machine that Mourinho created in his first stint and this is particularly bad news for Alan Pardew’s visitors.
A home win is considered almost elementary by Ladbrokes at 1/4, though there is far more value to be found in backing the 17/20 on a Chelsea win to nil.
Five defeats in seven across all competitions make bad enough reading for Newcastle, who not only lost their finest footballer to PSG in January (and their director of football as a result), but have a crippling injury list to boot.
Among the most notable casualties are midfielder enforcer Cheick Tiote, striker Papiss Cisse and defender Fabricio Coloccini, while Yoan Gouffran is 50/50 and new signing Luuk de Jong lacks match sharpness.
The camel’s back is then broken by the fact Pardew is still without top scorer Loic Remy, who serves the last of his three match ban.
Having failed to score in five of their last six league games, the Magpies look ill-equipped to alter that in west London, where a Chelsea clean sheet can be backed at 4/6.
Meanwhile, having only scored more than twice on one occasion at home across all comps in their last seven, the 12/5 about the 1-0/2-0 to Chelsea in the coupled correct score market sings out.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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