Best Odds: 6/5
With Monday night offering us a London derby at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea will be desperate to end their recent rut when they host West Ham from behind closed doors.
Starting with the hosts, while Chelsea might have enjoyed an eye-catching unbeaten run when opening December, the Blues have come crashing back down to earth. Despite many billing Frank Lampard’s new-look squad as a genuine title outsider this season, the former England skipper saw his side throw away the lead in worrying fashion earlier in the week. Despite taking a second-half lead away at Wolves on Tuesday, Chelsea eventually slumped to a last-gasp 2-1 defeat in the Midlands. Freefalling down to eighth in the table ahead of Monday’s meeting at Stamford Bridge, the former Premier League champions have now suffered back-to-back top-flight defeats for the first time this season. In fact, only managing to win just one of their last four top-flight appearances, the Blues should be calling on Olivier Giroud to lead their charge in West London. Bagging what turned out to be a consolation strike against Wolves last time out, the World Cup-winner has recorded six goals in his last seven matchups across all formats.
The duo of Callum Hudson-Odoi and Hakim Ziyech will face late fitness tests ahead of Monday’s showdown.
However, the Blues look set to be without right-back Reece James who is reportedly dealing with a knee injury.
As for the visitors, while West Ham might have put in a sluggish first-half display against Crystal Palace on home soil in midweek, the Hammers did manage to come from behind and leave with a point to show for their troubles. Despite opening the 2020/2021 campaign with back-to-back defeats against Newcastle and Arsenal, David Moyes’ men have bounced back in impressive fashion. Although many expected the former Manchester United boss to find his side in the midst of another relegation scrap this season, the East London outfit have played their way into the top-half of the table and some in their camp will even be dreaming of mounting a shock European charge. With Sébastien Haller bagging two goals in his last three top-flight contests, West Ham have lost just a pair of their last 11 Premier League matchups and the mood in their camp should be at a real high. Looking to cause an upset across the capital on Monday, the Hammers should also be boosted by an eye-catching record against the Blues. Including a dramatic 3-2 win when the two sides faced off after lockdown, Moyes’ men collected back-to-back wins against Chelsea last season.
West Ham are still left sweating over the fitness of both Michail Antonio and central defender Fabian Balbuena.
Key Factors to Consider
- Including a dramatic 3-2 win when the two sides faced off following the restart, West Ham collected back-to-back wins against Chelsea.
- The Blues have lost back-to-back Premier League matchups for the first time this season.
- French striker Olivier Giroud has recorded six goals in his last seven matchups across all formats.
- West Ham have lost just two of their last 11 Premier League matchups.
- Four of Chelsea’s last five Premier League matchups at Stamford Bridge have seen over 3.5 goals by the final whistle.
Coming off the back of their dramatic late collapse against Wolves in midweek, there is no doubt that Chelsea will be smelling a chance to make a much-welcomed return to winning ways. While West Ham might have largely impressed since opening the 2020/2021 campaign, the Hammers should face a stern test across the capital, despite their back-to-back victories against the Blues last season. With a red-hot Olivier Giroud bagging a consolation strike in the Midlands last time out and only continuing on what has been a real purple patch over the festive period, we’re backing the former Arsenal striker to extend on his tally at Stamford Bridge on Monday night.
Verdict: Olivier Giroud to score anytime
Best Odds: 6/5