English Premier League hotshots Chelsea are on the road this week when they make the short trip to Vicarage road to take on Watford on Saturday, August 20th.
Chelsea is hoping to rebound from a disastrous 2015/16 season while Watford will be happy to stay above the relegation zone. Chelsea won their season opener last week while Watford battled to a draw.
Watford vs Chelsea – bet365 Soccer Betting Line:
- bet365 currently lists Chelsea as the favorite to win the game at 8/11 with Watford 4/1 and a draw at 11/4.
Watford vs Chelsea – Head to Head:
The two sides met twice in league action last season and played to a 0-0 draw at Watford in February and a 2-2 sister-kisser at Stamford Bridge two months earlier. The clubs have met just 29 times in the past with Chelsea winning 14, losing nine and drawing the other six. Watford is winless in the past 10 with three draws and seven losses. Their last win was 1-0 at home in league action in September of 1999. It’s their lone victory in the past 15 meetings.
Watford – A Closer Look:
Watford was promoted to the Premier League at the end of the 2014/15 season and finished in 13th place last year. They had 45 points from 12 wins, nine draws and 17 losses while scoring 40 goals and allowing 50 against. Watford opened their season on the road at St. Mary’s in Southampton and managed a 1-1 draw with the hosts. Watford midfielder Ben Watson was sent off with a red card in the 76th minute and will be suspended for this match against Chelsea. French midfielder Etienne Capoue scored for Watford in the ninth minute after being set up by striker Troy Deeney, but Southampton leveled the game in the 58th minute on a goal new striker Nathan Redmond.
Manager Walter Mazzarri has been quite busy in the current summer transfer windows as several players have come and gone. The newcomers to the squad include Jerome Sinclair from Liverpool, Christian Kabasele from Genk, Isaac Success from Granada, Juan Camilo Zuniga from Napoli and Brice Dja Djedje from Marseille. Those who bade farewell to Vicarage Road were Joel Ekstrand, Gabriele Angella, George Byers, Jose Manuel Jurado, Almen Abdi, Daniel Pudil, Steven Berghuis, and Mario Suarez. However, Success is questionable for Saturday’s game and Dja Djedje is expected to be out until September.
Chelsea FC – A Closer Look:
Chelsea entered the 2015/16 Premier League as reigning champions, but finished in just 10th place with 50 points from 12 wins, 14 draws and 12 losses. They scored 59 goals and allowed 53 against. The club has a new manager this year in Antonio Conte of Italy and he was busy in the current transfer window by signing Michy Batshuayi from Marseille and N’Golo Kante from Leicester City. In addition, Nathan Ake has been sent out on loan to Bournemouth and Mohamed Salah signed with Roma of Italy. Conte may not be done yet as he’s still on the hunt for a top striker.
Chelsea managed to beat West Ham United 2-1 at home at Stamford Bridge in a London derby in their season opener last Saturday. Belgian international midfielder Eden Hazard opened the scoring in the 47th minute with a penalty kick. However, defender James Collins tied the game in the 77th minute for the Hammers. Chelsea then managed to take all three points on a long-range goal by Spanish striker Diego in the 89th minute on a shot which goaltender Adriano should have had. Chelsea is expected to be without defender Kurt Zouma until October due to recent knee surgery while fellow defender and team captain John Terry is questionable for Saturday’s match.
Watford vs Chelsea – Takeaway:
Chelsea has to beat teams such as Watford if they hope to regain the title they lost last season.
by Ian S. Palmer