Stamford Bridge is the venue for Thursday’s Premier League match between Chelsea and Everton. The home side were victorious in their previous match against Leeds, while the away side are struggling after suffering yet another setback in their previous game against Crystal Palace. Can Everton revive their form against Chelsea?
After starting the season brightly, Chelsea’s form has dipped slightly in recent weeks. The Blues have conceded seven goals in their previous four matches in the Premier League, after conceding just four in their opening 12. Since the arrival of Thomas Tuchel, the Blues have been solid defensively, and the opponents have had a hard time breaking them down, but their defensive form has slumped in recent weeks. Although they secured three points in their last game against Leeds, a 3-2 win at home, Chelsea looked shook up at the back. While many of the goals they have conceded have been as a result of individual errors, Tuchel would nonetheless be looking to fix his side’s overall organization at the back. Ben Chillwell is still nursing an injury which shall keep him out till January, while Mateo Kovacic is also set to miss out due to COVID-19 related concerns. N’Golo Kante could make the bench as he returned to training earlier this week.
In the previous game against Leeds, Chelsea had to rely on a stoppage-time penalty to grab three points. Jorginho took a calm and collected penalty in the 93rd minute to secure the win for his side. Chelsea had the higher xG in the match than their opponents. Both Silva and Azpilicueta made nine passes each to the final third. Kai Havertz won the joint-highest aerial duels.
Mirroring their league position, Chelsea are placed third in terms of expected goals as well. They average 1.68 expected goals per match, just behind Liverpool and Manchester City.
After displaying some resilience in their 2-1 win against Arsenal at home, Everton failed to carry on their momentum yet again as they fell to a 1-3 defeat against Crystal Palace. Barring the game against Arsenal, the Toffees are winless in their previous nine matches. As a result, they have dropped down to 14th place in the league with five wins, three draws, and eight losses in 16 games. Everton can take some confidence from the fact that they hold a decent record against Chelsea in their previous meetings. Richarlison is set to miss out on the match after suffering a calf injury in the recent match against Palace. Calvert-Lewin, Tom Davies, Yerry Mina, and Lucas Digne are all unavailable as well. Rondon should be leading the attack against Chelsea.
In the recent match against Crystal Palace, Everton fell 3-1, courtesy of a brace from Connor Gallagher and a goal from Tomkins. Rondon had the highest xG in the match. Demarai Gray made the highest number of dribbles, while Michael Keane made the joint-highest number of passes to the final third.
In terms of successful dribbles, Everton are placed second in the league, while they average over 15 dribbles per match.
Chelsea (3-4-2-1): Mendy; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Christensen; James, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek, Alonso; Mount, Pulisic; Lukaku.
Everton (4-4-1-1): Pickford; Coleman, Holgate, Keane, Godfrey; Townsend, Doucoure, Allan, Gordon; Gray; Rondon.
Everton will need to make the most of their opponent’s defensive slump, however, Chelsea are likely to come out on top in this one.