Chelsea can open up a break on their rivals at the top of the Premier League table - at least for a day - should they defeat Stoke on Saturday
|By PAUL GOUGH
Chelsea are overwhelming favourites to bounce back from their Champions League disappointment on Tuesday to win at home against Stoke, in the pick of the six games in the English Premier League on Saturday.
The Blues lead the table by one point from last season's runner-up Manchester United after four matches, with defending champions Manchester City and much-improved Arsenal a point further behind.
Those four teams already looking a cut above the rest at this early stage of the season.
And the Blues are being heavily backed to comfortably maintain top spot when they a Stoke that has drawn all four of their league matches so far this season to be sitting in 12th spot on the table.
But while Stoke performed well to take a point off reigning champions City last Saturday, that match was at home.
This week they have to travel to Stamford Bridge - a ground where they have a terrible record.
In their past four visits to the west London ground in both the Premier League and the FA Cup over the past two and a half years, Stoke have lost all four matches.
They have failed to score once, while in those four games Chelsea have banged in a total of 12 goals.
So it does not augur well for Stoke on Saturday against a Blues side that will be desperate to atone for the disappointment of throwing away a two-goal lead at home to draw 2-2 with Italian champions Juventus in their opening Champions League group game.
Two of Chelsea's past four matches against Stoke at the Bridge have ended in 2-0 wins and that is again the favoured scoreline in correct-score betting at Luxbet on this match, with the Blues at $6 to record another 2-0 win on Saturday.
And another value bet is to take Chelsea's exciting young Brazilian Oscar to score the first goal of this game at $8 at Luxbet, after his exciting two-goal double against Juventus.With the other big guns not in action until Sunday, Chelsea have a great opportunity to put their title rivals under pressure with a win on Saturday.
|Everton to win v Swansea at $2.35 at Luxbet
||Chelsea to win 2-0 v Stoke at $6 at Luxbet|
There are just six matches on Saturday, with the other key game being Southampton's attempt to finally pick up their first points of the season at home to Aston Villa.
The newly-promoted Saints already look destined for an immediate return to the Championship, having lost all four games so far while scoring just five goals and conceding 14.
But the Saints have had a hard draw, playing three of the big four in Arsenal and both Manchester clubs, and have been installed as the $2.35 favourites at Luxbet to win at home against a modest Villa side at $2.95.
But the other games are tough to predict, with West Ham favourites at $2.15 at Luxbet at home to Sunderland, who are better value at $3.35 as is the draw at $3.20.
*Note prices subject to change