The Premier League leaders are back on their travels again this week, enduring a four hour plane trip to Ukraine to face the always under-estimated Shakhtar Donetsk.
William Hill are top of the pile for Chelsea at 13/8, and despite spending big on a terrible advertising campaign, Stan James can afford to offer 2/1 on the home side. The draw is 5/2 with Sky Bet.
International fixtures last week followed by a short, but still away trip nonetheless on Saturday may leave Chelsea a little bored of travelling. Frank Lampard didn't feature in Poland and only made a cameo against Spurs, so it would be no surprise to see him in the XI this Tuesday. Another man who has been missing fixtures for a totally different reason is also available, John Terry should be given the nod and the hypocritical and ironic anti-racism armband, but we won't touch on that.
Shakhtar boast a very impressive record of late. Despite the questionable strength of the Ukrainian league, the hosts are 100% from 12 games and unbeaten in Europe. Few players from their squad will register with a British audience, Football Manager enthusiasts will be well aware of the Darijo Srna factor, versatile down the wings and exceptional at free-kicks; but can you trust Football Manager? It said Frazier Campbell was the next Les Ferdinand. Fellow Croatian and former jelly-legged Gunner Eduardo will likely make an appearance from the bench.
Looking across the coupon at some of the other fixtures this week, swerving this game on the accumulator is advisable. Form is all we cheap-buck-chasers have to go on, and ten times your money for Juan Mata to score first with Bwin looks very large, the Spaniard netted a brace at the weekend as well as in his last Champions League fixture. The previously mentioned Frank Lampard is available with a few bookmakers at 11/1 in the same market; despite lying deeper in the midfield these days Lampard still creeps around the edge of the box and has never missed a penalty in the Champions League.
A point each would leave both teams halfway to the ten point mark at the halfway stage, so avoiding defeat will be at the forefront of both bosses minds. Two unbeaten sides to draw is 5/2 with SkyBet.
Juan Mata to score first @ 10/1 with Bwin – new signups get £20 free, use it to win £220.
Chelsea HT Draw FT @ 16/1 with Bet Victor – new signups get £25 free, use it to win £425.
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