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Why Chelski Are Boring..


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..because this passes for interesting reading on one of their sites. I defy anyone to try and read it all the way through!!


This is a game which sees the team in 13th place host that at the top of the table. 33 points separate Chelsea from Everton, which amounts to more than the 29 points that Everton have harvested so far. Both Chelsea and Everton have played 23 League games, and whilst Chelsea have won 20 of those, Everton can only claim 9 wins. We've lost just the one game, Everton have tasted the bitterness of defeat 12 times. We have only 2 draws (one of which, er, was in the Everton away fixture), Everton also have only 2 draws to their name.


In reaping our 62 points, we've scored 49 goals and conceded 12. Both of those figures are the best in the table (although Liverpool have also let in only 12). Everton have scored a paltry 16 goals and conceded 31. 16 goals scored in 23 games is the lowest in the table (shared with Portsmouth), and the 31 let in is 10th worst. Our goal difference is a robust +37 (which, to the surprise of nobody, is head and shoulders above everybody else); Everton's is -15. Which is the 3rd worst.


Everton therefore have problems scoring goals. Their defence is actually not as bad as their overall form, it's up front that they are failing. Is there any salvation in their recent form? Well, despite our recent mishap against Charlton, Chelsea are still top of the form table, having taken 22 points from the past 8 games. Everton are definitely on the up: they've taken 12 points from their last 8, placing them in 9th position in the form table. Amusingly, this puts them above Arsenal. We've won 7 of our 8 matches, drawing the one. Everton have won 4 and lost 4. Ominously for Chelsea, however, the 4 wins were the last 4 games. We've scored 15 and conceded 5. Neither figure is the best in the form table: Manchester United have scored 17 and Liverpool and Arsenal have conceded 4. Everton have scored 8 and let in 14. Only 5 sides have scored as few or less, and 5 sides have conceded as many or more. Our recent goal difference is a healthy +10 (shares with Liverpool but less than Manchester United's +11). Everton have a recent goal difference of -6, which is worsted only by 3 sides.


We're confirming a tendency here: Everton score very few and their defence is not that good. However, this tells only part of the story, as their turnaround in recent weeks has been solid. Hence their 4 straight wins, and their position in the form table which is much better than the goal figures alone would indicate.


Can we find additional comfort in an assessment of Chelsea away versus Everton at home? Well, Everton will have to be good. Chelsea's away record is the strongest in the Premiership: we've taken 28 points from 11 games. The second-best away side is Manchester United, who've taken 24 from 12. We've won 9 of our 11 games, drawn one and lost just the one. Ominously, however, that draw was at Goodison. We've also scored 20 and conceded 5 in the process. The 20 goals scored are, in fact, one less than Manchester United's 21, but the 5 let in on the road are the best. Our away goal difference is therefore +15, which is more than twice as good as next best Manchester United's +7. Everton at home, however, are not strong: they have 13 points from 11 home games, putting them 16th in the home table. They have 4 home wins and 6 defeats, with just the one draw (the one against Chelsea). In fact, they've scored only 9 home goals (the 3rd worst) and let in 15 at home (joint 6th worst). They have a home goal difference of -6. Which is also the 3rd worst.


On paper, looking at it, it is looking optimistic for Chelsea: Everton's home form is, in fact, worse than their overall form, and a lot worse than their away performances. Their key problem is an inability to score; James Beattie may have netted the winner against Arsenal (and scored the penalty against us) but he hasn't performed and shone as brightly as was expected. In addition, Everton have just sold Marcus Bent to Charlton, which was a sale that somewhat ruffled Chelsea last weekend. We'd add that Everton are particularly poor in the second half of their matches: they've scored only 3 second half goals. That has to be compared to Chelsea's 32. No-one has scored more in the second 45 than us; no-one has scored fewer than Everton. At the other end, we've let in only 2 second-half goals; for Everton the figure is 20. Only Sunderland have let in more second half goals, although Portsmouth have conceded as many. Their second-half goal difference (-17) is the second worse. Behind Sunderland.


All this suggests that Chelsea should win. It is, however, not that easy: the statistics were somewhat similar for Chelsea's League visit in October, if not more so: at the time, Everton were in a very bad way indeed. Everton have shown this season that they can cause an upset. Many are predicting one this weekend.


The key will be whether Chelsea can shake off complacency. I would like to suggest that, having already drawn at Goodison, José will know how to avoid a repeat disappointment. However, last weekend was a lesson in what not to do. Although Chelsea didn't lose to Charlton, we can't say that they learnt their lessons from the Carling Cup defeat. Is there enough urgency in Chelsea against a side that will certainly be up for it?


We wonder. We can anticipate a difficult match, in which Everton will be trying their hardest at what is their last remaining hope of silverware, against a side that is 'looking vulnerable' (© every newspaper) and which they know how to trouble. Everton are also a side on the up: beating Arsenal is just the groundwork that Moyes' men need. We'd like to think that José will have done his homework, and that the Chelsea players, who are possibly the most guilty of the current lack of urgency, will respond to last week's disappointment in style. But this is also a cup match, a one-off. So Everton will be more than keen.


The bookies suggest that an upset could be on the cards (and Lawro predicts a 1-1 draw). The odds on a Chelsea win - ½ - are some of the lowest this season, even taking account that this is an away match. Indeed, at around 5/1 for an Everton home win, our opponents are looking fairly good value. Significantly, a draw is 3/1 or less; with Everton's recent resurgence (but difficulties to score), could this be the most likely outcome? Looking at the correct scores, for once a Chelsea 1-0 (5/1) is more likely than a 2-0 (11/2). Next up is a 1-1 draw (6/1). An Everton 1-0 win (they've won 3 of their past 4 games by this margin) is only 11/1. You can bet on a Chelsea 3-0 for less (9/1). We're going to be cautious: we think that Chelsea will eventually edge this game, but it will be close. 1-2 to our boys, waiting by the hat on Monday lunchtime.



Somebody shoot me!!

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Guest Reg Reagan

what a load of bullshit that article is...


and i do not think that hoe-zay mourinhoe will field his strongest team this afternoon so it should be a piss easy game for us to go through!

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