Chelsea v Southampton Betting Tips – 22nd April 2018
Southampton thought their luck was finally turning early on Saturday afternoon. The Saints held a fully deserved 2-0 lead over Chelsea at St Mary’s with just 20 minutes remaining but then disaster struck.
Mark Hughes watched on in horror from the touchline as his new team threw away a position of strength to lose 3-2 and plunge them further into the relegation mire. Other results then went against the Saints leaving them with a huge task to avoid slipping into the Championship.
Hughes and his players have a rare chance to forget about their relegation woes on Sunday when they face Chelsea again, this time in the semi-final of the FA Cup.
We’ve seen teams in a relegation battle do well in the cup before and Chelsea’s own poor recent form means the Saints can’t be completely written off. However, Chelsea and Conte have unfinished business in the FA Cup having lost in last year’s final and are the clear favourites to make it to the showpiece event once again.
Chelsea to Prove Too Strong for Struggling Saints
Southampton and Chelsea have every reason to be upset with the Premier League. Both sides are in league action on Thursday night, giving them limited time to prepare for their FA Cup encounter.
The proximity of those two games will have an effect on both teams but you’d have to think it hands Chelsea another edge. The Blues have nothing left to play for now that their hopes of a top four finish have effectively been ended and can therefore rest their key players for the FA Cup.
In stark contrast, Southampton would happily give up their place in the semi-final if it meant they could guarantee their safety. Hughes will certainly be treating Thursday’s game with more importance and could see Sunday’s day out at Wembley as little more than an unwelcome distraction at this stage.
The main frustration that Southampton fans have is that their team is actually a pretty good one on paper. Their definitely too good for the position they find themselves in but it may be too late for them.
The rot has set in, the players look frustrated with each other and morale is at an all-time low. Chelsea should increase the misery by recording their second win over the Saints in as many weekends at 1/2 with Sportingbet.
It could also be worth having a bet on over 2.5 goals at 4/5 with Betfair as Chelsea feel at home at Wembley and if everything clicks they could be way too hot to handle on Sunday afternoon.
Chelsea to Ensure Safe Passage
Although the Chelsea fans who made the trip to St Mary’s last weekend left the ground with a real buzz, it was not the sort of performance that Antonio Conte wanted.
The Italian could well be on his way out of the club and the meek manner of Chelsea’s performance for much of the game did his chances of remaining in post little good.
Conte is far too professional and competitive to allow off-field concerns to affect the job he does at Chelsea. He’ll be demanding that his players are equally professional and that they don’t allow Southampton even a sniff of a win at Wembley.
For that reason, a bet on the Chelsea/Chelsea selection in Ladbrokes’ half time/full time market looks a good play at 5/4.
Olivier Giroud showed his worth to the Chelsea cause with the Blues’ first and third goals on Saturday. He’ll hope to have done enough to earn his place in the starting XI at Wembley, especially give Alvaro Morata’s continued struggles.
Giroud has plenty of Wembley experience and is a good first goalscorer bet at 31/10 with 888Sport.