Chelsea to continue winning streak

    14 Sep 2018 | Premier League | Preview
    Chelsea to continue winning streak

    Chelsea host Cardiff at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. The Blues head into the fixture winners of their four opening matches.

    Maurizio Sarri has brought a breath of fresh air to Chelsea and his players are responding to the new tactics. Cardiff have found life in the Premier League to be very difficult. Neil Warnock’s team has secured just two points from 12. Cardiff have scored a mere two goals and have failed to register a strike in three out of four matches. The Bluebirds only scored their first goal of the season in their fourth match against Arsenal, a 3-2 loss at home to the Gunners.

    Sarri’s Chelsea sit second in the Premier League due to goal difference. Depending on results elsewhere on Saturday, Chelsea could go top of the table. The Blues defence has been outstanding thus far and it is doubtful Cardiff will pose a danger in front of goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga. Chelsea have given up just three goals, which is good for joint-second in the league. Meanwhile, the team’s attack has registered 10 goals. Sarri’s 4-3-3 attacking formation has brought the best out of winger Eden Hazard. The Belgian has scored twice and assisted two goals. In each Chelsea match, the team has tallied two or more strikes against their opponents.

    Cardiff will see the return of important midfielder Aron Gunnarsson from injury. There is no guarantee Warnock will start him, however, following his fight for fitness. More worrying for Warnock is how to get the ball away from Chelsea’s dangermen. Cardiff play a direct style that isn’t afraid to counterattack. Chelsea’s possession-based offence will keep the ball for large parts of the game. The team averages just under 65 percent possession a match. Chelsea will starve Cardiff of the ball, and the Bluebirds will most likely spend much of the 90 minutes having 10 men pinned near their own area. Cardiff average just 42.9 percent possession. They will struggle to get on the ball and fans shouldn’t expect the same two goal output Cardiff experienced against Arsenal.

    Although Chelsea are rolling under Sarri currently, the Blues will begin European play next week. In addition, the EFL Cup will begin with a match against Liverpool on September 26. Things will become more difficult for Sarri and his players.

    The Blues have won their three most recent matches against Cardiff in all competitions. The Blues scored two or more goals in each fixture. With Chelsea unbeaten in eight of their last 10 Premier League matches and playing brilliantly under Sarri, they will pick up a fifth win from five and possibly takeover top spot in the league.

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