Much of the focus for followers of UK football is on the two cup finals played on Sunday in London and Glasgow. Manchester United face Newcastle United in the EFL Cup final at Wembley after Old Firm rivals Rangers and Celtic decide the Scottish League Cup final at Hampden. It promises to be an emotional afternoon for supporters of those four clubs and a dramatic one for neutrals and armchair fans. Which combination of two teams do you expect to find glory? Man Utd and Rangers, perhaps? Our team of football writers covers both finals in detail on this site, offering our views on the form and making predictions.
Cup finals are notoriously difficult to call as most of the usual rules for predicting a football match can be ignored. It’s a one-off game that will be decided on the day, with extra time and penalties available if required. Exciting if you love the sport, but it’s not so great for those preparing to make predictions. That’s why we’re relieved to see one match played in the English Premier League on Sunday, and it’s a cracker. From 13:30 GMT, we have an eagerly anticipated London derby involving home team Tottenham Hotspur and visitors Chelsea.
These sides have served up some memorable contests in the past, and we have high hopes for another thriller. The last time Spurs and the Blues crossed paths, followers were treated to a stunning game with four goals scored and plenty more talking points. That match at Stamford Bridge finished 2-2, with Harry Kane netting a 90th-minute equaliser. That result means Chelsea is now unbeaten in the Premier League against Spurs since November 2018. That will fill the visiting fans with hope, but will Chelsea continue that run, or can a new, improved home side return to winning ways? Keep reading to find our predictions.
Spurs climb to fourth
It has been a strange season for fans of Tottenham Hotspur, with the club enduring plenty of low points and a few highs. They appear to have turned the corner – at least for now – and are back playing well. Spurs have momentum, are winning games, scoring goals, and climbing the charts. But what everyone connected to the London club values most; they are back in the top four and have a chance of reaching next season’s UEFA Champions League. If they can’t win the EPL title, mixing it with Europe’s elite next term is the next best thing, and that comes with securing a place in the best four. At present, Spurs sit fourth in the pecking order, but third-placed Man Utd is nine points off in the distance, with Newcastle a point behind in fifth with a game to play.
Winning on Sunday at home to Chelsea would go some way to helping Tottenham finish in the prize places. With their two closest rivals – Man Utd and Newcastle – playing in the EFL Cup final after this game, Spurs have a chance to pile pressure on those around them. Win here, and they will move four points clear of the Magpies, who will then have two games in hand. A home win would also see Spurs close the gap on Man Utd to just four points, with the Red Devils having a game spare. Nothing will be decided in the Premier League this weekend, of course, but ask any manager if they’d prefer a game in hand or points on the board, and they’ll answer the same way. This is a great opportunity for the Peacocks.
Spurs have failed to win 11 of their 24 league games this season, but their fortunes are improving fast. The home team has won three of its last four and bagged maximum points in their most recent outing when beating West Ham in another London derby match played at this venue. Spurs beat the Hammers 2-0 seven days ago with the goals scored by Royal and Son. It was a competitive match, but Tottenham’s second-half performance was enough to help them land the three points.
Chelsea left feeling blue
What’s going on at Chelsea? They are stuck in midtable, sitting in 10th place at the time of writing, and are closer to the relegation zone than they are to winning the title. That will come as a huge surprise to anyone with an interest in English football who weren’t already aware of the Blues’ problems. Can they salvage their season? It looks unlikely at this point, but Chelsea does have time on their side and knows a European finish is still within their grasp. To climb the table, first, they must stop the rot, and it’s set deep.
Their league form shows Chelsea has eight wins, seven draws, and eight defeats this term under manager Graham Potter. They have 23 goals and conceded the same number, meaning the likes of Brentford and Fulham have a better goal difference. That shows just how bad they have been this season, and there has been nothing in their recent form that suggests they are about to turn the corner. The visitors arrive having won only one of their last five and are winless in four. That barren spell shows three draws and a defeat.
We last saw Chelsea in action a week ago when they suffered a shock 1-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge against a Southampton side that’s rock bottom of the league and likely to be playing Championship football this time next year. The winning goal that silenced the home crowd was scored by Ward-Prowse on the stroke of half-time, and Chelsea’s shot-shy attack failed to score the goal needed to get at least a point from the game. Defeat to the Saints was a real low point for the club.
Tottenham v Chelsea prediction
Tottenham has won three and lost one of its last four Premier League games and now enjoys a home advantage. Chelsea cross the city on the back of a four-game winless streak that has seen them take three points from the dozen available while losing to the bottom of the league. If this game follows the form, there’s only going to be one winner.
Premier League odds
The pre-match betting odds offered by 22bet has Tottenham at 3.14 with Chelsea 2.16 and the draw 3.64.
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