Chelsea vs Crystal Palace preview, betting tips and prediction: Palace's miserable run to continue at Stamford Bridge
Eden Hazard to score anytime @ 11/10 with Betfair
Chelsea to win with a -2 handicap @ 12/5 with Betfair
Chelsea to win 2-0 @ 9/2 with Betfair
Chelsea were criticised heavily for their approach to last week’s defeat to Manchester City because they barely made a play in attack all afternoon. Antonio Conte sat men behind the ball with Eden Hazard cutting an extremely frustrated figure up front on his own. It was strange to see such a tactic, because Hazard was not doing the duties of a false nine, which he usually does when deployed in a central area. Instead, he was played like a target man, expected to run the channels and bring others into play. Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata, two specialist strikers, could only watch on from the sidelines as City ran out 1-0 winners.
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It is expected that this weekend, when the Blues play host to Crystal Palace, Conte will opt for a more logical approach, one that will allow Hazard the freedom he desires on a weekly basis. The Eagles are on a tough run of form and definitely there for the taking; Roy Hodgson’s instant impact turned around the worst ever start to a Premier League season, but he has not tasted victory in six games, and without star man Wilfred Zaha, who is out with a knee injury, things are looking bleak. Currently locked in the bottom three, it is hard to see the Eagles taking anything from this game.
Chelsea are falling behind the chasing pack in the race for Champions League football after that defeat to City, while Palace are desperate to end another torrid run of form with a shock win.
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Chelsea have no fresh concerns, while Zaha, along with Yohan Cabaye, Bakary Sako, Jason Puncheon and Ruben Loftus-Cheek (on loan from Chelsea) is still missing for Palace.