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Chelsea v Liverpool
Arguably the most anticipated game of the week, Chelsea host Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Sunday afternoon. Despite not having the most favourable run of form away from Anfield last season (W6 D5 L8), the visitors are favourites to win the match. Both teams will be looking to improve on dire performances last season, where the Reds went from almost winning the quadruple in 2021/2022 to failing to qualify for the Champions League. The Blues’ season went even worse.
The last six meetings between the two Premier League giants have all ended in draws, with the last four being goalless. However, with so many recent changes, it is expected that only eight of 22 players from their most recent bout will start this weekend. The Blues are also bringing Mauricio Pochettino back to the Premier League, a more attacking manager who should make use of their new signings. These changes should inject excitement into the match. In this article, we will be breaking down some stand-out stats and key players in the game that have been identified. You don’t to want to miss this.
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Chelsea stats: Pochettino to ramp up Chelsea’s attack
Pochettino joins the Blues this season, leaving many Chelsea fans excited. His attacking style, working with a combination of quick transitions and positional play, normally means his teams play on the front foot. Combine this with some exciting new signings and home-field advantage, and Chelsea will look to dominate the attack.
Last season, under the control of four different managers, the Blues finished in a disappointing 12th place. Despite this, the Blues still averaged four shots on target each game. Over pre-season, they averaged 5.2 shots on target, against top-flight teams and Wrexham.
As a team, there is value in backing Chelsea shots on target. They are 1.20 for four shots on target, last season’s average, and 1.50 for five, this year’s pre-season average.
Liverpool Stats: Corner taken quickly…
Liverpool like their corners. It’s as simple as that. Last season, Klopp’s men averaged 6.2 corners for and only 3.5 corners against. This mainly comes from the strength of their wingers, exploiting pace and technical ability to win their team’s corners (Mohammed Salah and Luis Diaz/Darwin Nunez). The corners have also proved to be highly successful for the Reds in the past – just think of that night at Anfield…
What helps to fit the narrative of Liverpool corners on Sunday is that the Blues conceded lots last season. On average they had 4.8 corners taken against them. In their two games against the Reds last season, the Blues conceded five corners in each game.
For the Reds to take five corners on Sunday afternoon, Paddy Power are offering odds of 1.57. For Liverpool to take more corners than the home team, which happened the last time they met, the odds are longer at 1.83.
Chelsea v Liverpool Cheat Sheet
For those unfamiliar with the Cheat Sheets, one word that can be used to describe them is indispensable. In a few more words:
They’re exactly what they sound like – a sheet of stats that has been designed to give you a deeper understanding of the selected game ahead. From fouls committed to average team corners, the sheet has everything you could possibly want to know prior to placing a bet on a game. During this article, we will be breaking down the major elements of the Chelsea v Liverpool Cheat Sheet.
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🎯 Chelsea Offensive Stats: I’m sorry Ms Jackson, I am Villa Real
The home team have, as always, been busy this transfer window. Their biggest signing was Christopher Nkunku, however, he is currently injured and expected back in November. Another key signing in attack is Nicolas Jackson, who joins the Blues from Villarreal.
Jackson was involved in 16 goals from 26 starts in La Liga last season, averaging over a shot on target per game and 0.40 xG per match. For reference, this is just less than Marcus Rashford (0.42 xG) and more than Ollie Watkins (0.39 xG). Jackson also managed to score twice in pre-season and looks to be a nailed-on starter for Sunday.
Using the predicted line-ups and pre-season as a base, the home team look like they are going to set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation – placing a high amount of focus on Jackson and providing him with plenty of opportunity. The Senegalese striker is 2.87 to score in the game, and 2.40 to register two shots on target. Both of which look like decent value given his strong stats.
🎯 Liverpool Offensive Stats: Gakpo looks to be in strong shooting form
The Dutch forward, Cody Gakpo, started against the Blues in January and did not shy away from having a pop at goal. Gakpo took seven shots at goal, only landing one on target. This represented half of his team’s shots.
Gakpo looks like he will start over Darwin Nunez on Sunday and be involved in plenty of action. Similar to Jackson, Gakpo managed to score twice over pre-season, notably one against Bayern Munich. Gakpo used his pace and finishing ability to break away from the back line and slot one into the top left corner.
Gakpo is amazing value too. He’s 1.67 for a shot on target and 1.36 for two or more shots. Considering his seven attempts last game this looks to be a very strong selection for a bet builder.
🛑 Chelsea Defensive Stats: Conor Gallagher will have his hands full on Sunday
There was a lot of speculation about Conor Gallagher’s future at Stamford Bridge, with the England midfielder being highly sought after. At the moment however, he looks likely to start on Sunday afternoon and Pochettino has expressed that he likes Gallagher and has him involved in this season’s plans.
Gallagher averaged the highest fouls committed in the Chelsea team last season, committing 1.9 fouls per game. He also received 11 yellow cards, showing relatively aggressive tendencies. He is likely to have a lot on his plate on Sunday with the Reds’ new midfield.
New signings Mac Allister and Szoboszlai, as well as young talent Curtis Jones, are all predicted to play in the away team’s midfield. Respectively, they draw 1.67, 1.29, and 1.39 fouls each game on average. All midfielders offer a high level of pace and strong dribbling ability, creating a tough task for Gallagher.
Considering there are no odds for him to commit one foul (as they are too low), and only 1.33 for two fouls, the English midfielder is great value for a card at 3.20.
🛑 Liverpool Defensive Stats: Konate has a high fouling record against Chelsea
Ibrahima Konate averaged the highest number of fouls committed last season for Liverpool. He also picked up five yellow cards in the process. Against Chelsea, these stats rise. In January the French international committed three fouls on an out-of-form Blues side. Later in April, he would go on to do more of the same, committing two fouls.
Konate is predicted to be up against Mudryk and Jackson. Mudryk drew 1.64 fouls in the second half of last season, with many defenders pulling him down on the counter-attack. New signing Jackson suffered 1.5 fouls per game, also regularly being brought down on the break.
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