Leicester vs Chelsea predictions: Foxes to fall short against the Blues
- Leicester have been dragged back into the relegation mix with three successive league defeats
- Chelsea looked back to their best against Borussia Dortmund
- Recommended bet: Chelsea to win
After weeks of turmoil, things appear to be looking up for Chelsea as they prepare to take on Leicester City in the Premier League.
Successive wins over Borussia Dortmund and Leeds United have lifted the pressure on Graham Potter, and he now looks at home in the Blues’ dugout.
While the pressure is off for an unrealistic top-four finish for Chelsea, Leicester are firmly in the mix for relegation, and the spotlight is firmly on Brendan Rodgers.
A run of three successive league defeats means the Foxes could slip into the bottom three if results go against them this weekend, and Brendan Rodgers’ men could not have picked a worse time to face a rejuvenated Blues side.
Leicester’s problems at full-back continue with January signing Victor Kristiansen ruled out for a month with an ankle injury. He joins James Justin and Ryan Bertrand on the sidelines, with Justin unlikely to return in 2022-23 and Bertrand a few weeks from returning.
Key midfielder Youri Tielemans is out for a month with damage to his ankle ligaments, and centre-back Jonny Evans and winger Harvey Barnes have only a slim chance of returning from thigh and ankle injuries, respectively.
Chelsea will be without centre-back Thiago Silva for around five weeks with a knee injury, while striker Armando Broja is out until next season, goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is not expected back until next month, and midfielder N’Golo Kante is still a couple of weeks from returning.
However, defender Cesar Azpilicueta and midfielder Mason Mount both have an outside chance of returning to the Chelsea squad.
Leicester have not kept a clean sheet in their last 10 Premier League outings, conceding at a rate of 1.8 goals per game in that run.
The Foxes have also won only two of their last eight home games in all competitions, with one of those victories coming against League Two Newport.
Chelsea have had an underwhelming Premier League campaign, but that is largely to do with their poor performances against the better teams; they have yet to beat a top-half opponent this term.
However, their record against teams in the bottom half is solid, with the Blues victorious of nine of those 14 matches.
While it can be dangerous to read too much into a two-game run of results, Chelsea’s victories over Leeds and Dortmund last week felt important for the club. There was a distinct change in atmosphere at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night, with Potter looking energised and the team on song as they outclassed a quality opponent that is level on points with leaders Bayern Munich in the German Bundesliga.
Confidence and the ability to play with freedom could be decisive in this game, and while Chelsea look revitalised, the Foxes’ belief will have been hit hard by last weekend’s defeat to lowly Southampton.
Rodgers’ men know they are being dragged back into a tense relegation scrap and could struggle under pressure.
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