Liverpool v Chelsea Casumo Preview

Who knew that Liverpool v Chelsea would be all about the top four race? With Manchester City running away with the title and Liverpool’s hopes all but faded, Klopp’s main ambition is now the top four. Chelsea’s poor start and eventual managerial change was always going to make this season a tricky one, but they are still in a good position to make a charge for a Champions League berth.

And here we are. Chelsea are in fifth place just one point above Liverpool and it’s all to play for.

The maths

FiveThirtyEight crunched the numbers and as it stands, Liverpool have a 61% of making the top four.

Chelsea’s lower chance of 48% means that this game is slightly more important for them.

These figures will change weekly and depend on previous results and current form, but the likelihood of an outsider like West Ham or Aston Villa clinching a spot ahead of the traditional big four is slim. Arsenal’s chances are rated at 5% while Manchester United, currently in second have an 85% chance.

The form

Liverpool should be more worried about their current form than Chelsea. Anfield has not proved to be a fortress this season and they are on a terrible run as they have lost their last four games at Anfield…

Their 2-0 win at Sheffield United did little to comfort fans as a win against the basement boys should be a given, unless you are Manchester United, who did lose to Sheffield and draw against West Brom.

Chelsea’s last result was a 0-0 draw against Manchester United, which essentially handed Manchester City the title. Chelsea did well, dominated the game but failed to find the net as David de Gea looked at his best again. A repeat performance with more energy up front is required to beat Liverpool. Thomas Tuchel is still undefeated as Chelsea manager, and he seems to have tightened the Blues’ defence up. His side have only conceded two goals in his first nine games as Chelsea manager. Compare that to Frank Lampard, who conceded 16 in his first eight and you can see real progress.

The odds

Of course, Tuchel’s Chelsea has never come up against Mo Salah, the Premier League’s leading goal scorer. The Egyptian has an impressive haul of 17 goals so far this season, in what is meant to be an off-season for his club. Surely if anyone can breach Chelsea’s back line it would be him and we’re pricing him up at 4/1 or 5.00 to score the game’s first goal.

A Chelsea win to nil, just in case that tickles your fancy is at 5/1 or 6/1 but we do feel a draw is the most likely outcome. 1-1 is chalked up at 11/2 or 6.5, which would do neither side a favour and would mean those percentage ratings above will swing in favour of the outsiders once again.