Chelsea vs West Bromwich Albion: Preview, TV channel info, Live stream, Team News, Predictions, Betting odds
Chelsea would be looking to continue their form under interim manager Guus Hiddink. The Boys in Blue have so far lost none of their games since Hiddink took over. Chelsea also managed to keep 3 consecutive clean sheets. Although Hiddink’s side remain at the 14th position in the Premier League, a win over Tony Pulis’ West Brom could see them move 3 points clear off the top half of the table.
Hiddink has said that he targets the 4th position and that remains a possibility but also said that targeting the 4th position wouldn’t come at the expense of youngsters. He would give them playing time whenever possible. Hiddink said that the youngsters must try to also learn and work with this pressure.
Kickoff and Live Telecast
Date: 13th January 2016
Time: 7:45pm GMT (1:15 am IST)
Venue: Stamford Bridge, London
Referee: Anthony Taylor
Channel: Star Sports 2/HD2
Live stream: Hotstar.com
Hiddink has said he would not rush Hazard back and he is unlikely to play this game or the next game as well. Hazard would be given all the time needed recover from his latest injury. Costa, who has been superb under Hiddink, was a doubt for this game. He had picked up a knee injury while playing in the FA Cup in the weekend. Hiddink, in his pre-match conference, confirmed that Costa is fit to play against West Ham.
Hiddink also confirmed that Remy is back in training. He was sidelined for a couple of weeks and is now back. He trained with the group since the last two days. It remains to be seen whether Remy would play any part in this fixture or not.
Oscar and Matic, both are doubtful for the game but the latter is expected to start. Matic picked up a head injury in training and hence missed the FA Cup fixture. Oscar also picked up an injury in the FA Cup match.
Milestone: If selected, Cesc Fabregas will make his 50th Premier League start for the Blues.
Unlike Hiddink, Pulis does not have much concern over the fitness of his players. Jonas Olsson and Victor Anichebe are the only injury concerns for Pulis at the moment. James McClean and Rondon are both back from their 3-match bans and are expected to start the match.
Berahino came off the bench and did manage to score against Bristol City in the FA Cup fixture but it remains to be seen whether he would start this fixture or not.
Chelsea(4-2-3-1): Courtois; Ivanovic, Terry, Zouma, Azpilicueta; Mikel, Matic; Willian, Fabregas, Pedro; Costa
West Brom(4-2-3-1): Myhill; Brunt, Evans, McAuley, Dawson; Yacob, Fletcher; McClean, Morrison, Sessegnon; Rondon
Guss Hiddink remains unbeaten in his second stint in the interim charge of the club so far. Chelsea have now gone 5 games unbeaten (in all competitions), including the game where Steve Holland was in-charge, The Blues longest such run this season.
Costa seems to have found his form under Hiddink. He has now scored 4 goals in his last 3 games. Booed by his own supporters weeks ago, his name has begun to be chanted by the same fans once again.
The Blues have won 4 and lost 4 of their last 9 league games at the Bridge.
Chelsea: L-L-W-D-D-W (Last game: 2-0 against Scunthorpe)
Just like Chelsea, West Brom have started 2016 in encouraging form and go into this fixture three points clear of Chelsea. The Baggies are unbeaten in their last 3 games in all competitions but face a rejuvenated Chelsea side under Hiddink.
West Brom’s next 5 games are against those teams who are below them in the table and they don’t play a top half team until 27th February. This would make it even more difficult for the Baggies to end their campaign. This, therefore, makes it very important for The Baggies to pick up maximum points over the next couple of games or else face the danger of being relegated.
The Baggies have managed to score just 6 away goals in the league all season and have failed to win any of their last 4 outings on their travels. With Berahino likely to leave because of less playing time, the team could certainly do with extra firepower in this transfer window.
West Brom have scored 9 headers in the Premier League so far.
West Brom: D-D-L-L-W-W (Last game: 2-2 against Bristol City)
- Chelsea has kept a clean sheet in 7 of their last 9 games in all competitions.
- West Brom has lost more Premier League games against Chelsea than against any other team (14).
- The Baggies have not scored in the opening 15 minutes of a Premier League game since May 18, 2015 and are the only side yet to do so this season.
- Chelsea have lost just 1 out of their last 6 games with the Baggies (W3 D2 L1).
- Should West Brom win this game, they would then win 3 successive league games for the first time since November 2012.
- If Chelsea lose this fixture, they would have then lost 5 home matches in a single Premier League season for the first time in 20 years.
- Chelsea haven’t lost a league game at home against The Baggies since 1978.
Costa vs Jonny Evans
Costa seems have found his form back since the departure of Mourinho. He has scored 3 goals in his last 2 league appearances. He would once again be leading Chelsea’s attack and Guss Hiddink expects him to score again and give Chelsea an early lead.
Costa would be up against West Brom’s defense, who have managed to keep a clean sheet in their last 8 league away wins.
Former Manchester United defender, Jonny Evans will lead the defense of West Brom. He has been a regular starter for the Baggies since he joined West Brom last summer, and has so far made 16 league appearances this season.
Evans has looked in good form in his last 3 appearances (Stoke, Newcastle and Swansea), and Pulis would be hoping for a similar performance from him if his team is to stop Costa from scoring.
Willian vs Gareth McAuley
Willian has been the standout performer for Chelsea this season. Amid Chelsea’s troubles in the first half of the campaign, Willian’s performance was the only real positive for the club. The 27-year-old continues to bang in goals for his club and has so far scored 8 goals in all competitions.
Willian has also has 3 Premier Leagues assists and the threat which he poses from set-pieces could be a big worry for Tony Pulis.
Willian would be up against Gareth McAuley, who has made 124 Premier League appearances so far but the main worry for McAuley would be his speed. The speed and tricks which Willian possess could worry McAuley. McAuley would need to be at his best if he wants to stop Willian from scoring or playing his regular game.
Total played: 134
Chelsea wins: 56
West Brom wins: 43
At Stamford Bridge
Total played: 59
Chelsea wins: 30
West Brom wins: 14
Biggest win for each club at Stamford Bridge
Chelsea 7-1 West Brom- 03/12/1960
Chelsea 2-5 West Brom- 17/04/1929
Betting Odds (BET365)
Chelsea to win: 4/9
West Brom to win: 8/1
This shouldn’t be a tough fixture for Chelsea. They should win this game without any difficulty.
Predicted Score: Chelsea 2-0 West Brom