Although Southampton only sit a couple of points above the relegation zone, Saints fans shouldn’t worry just yet. The side is much improved under the progressive management of Ralph Hasenhuttl and if they can find a bit more cutting edge in front of goal they could challenge for a Top Half finish.
While they have only registered seven goals so far this campaign, there is room to improve with quality players such as Danny Ings, Nathan Redmond and James Ward-Prowse in the final third. Despite gifting the Saints a goal last weekend, Hugo Lloris made a number of crucial saves to deny them something from the game. Ings benefited from the aforementioned gift goal and bagged two in the previous fixture against Pompey – if he can kick on from this, we may see him fulfil the potential that has been halted through injury in recent years.
Chelsea, on the other hand, have had no trouble in the scoring department: only Liverpool and Man City have netted more in the league this season. Frank Lampard’s young squad are playing with a freedom that has seen them fail to score just once in all competitions this year. This goalless effort came in their opener versus Man Utd – a game from which they really deserved to get something, a goal at the very least.
But while Chelsea are a breath of fresh air to watch going forward and are scoring for fun, they are conceding at just the same rate. At times their defence has looked less Frank Lampard and more Frank Sinclair. This could be a really open game and a fun watch for the neutrals, so the best bet here looks to be Both Teams To Score at 4/7.
There’s also a real possibility of Chelsea getting two or more goals – apart from the opening day of the season they have managed at least 2 goals on the road in all competitions this season. With that in mind, Away Team Total Goals – Over 1.5 at 8/11 looks a good alternative if you don’t fancy the shorter BTTS play.
Given Chelsea can be expected to get a couple here, it’s hard to look past Tammy Abraham in the goalscorer market. He’s bagged eight in 10 games in all competitions so far, six of these coming on the road. A return to the England set-up should see his first competitive cap in the upcoming qualifiers and this will only add to his already sky-high confidence. Him to be First Goalscorer at 4/1 looks a great price.
On the subject of Chelsea’s defensive struggles, they have struggled recently from dead-ball scenarios, conceding goals from set pieces in four of their last six games. As a result, there is certainly some value to be found in the Player Shots on Target market.
Jannik Vestergaard has registered seven attempts at goal in seven league games this season, four on target including one goal. Southampton possess great ability from dead-balls in the form of Redmond and Ward-Prowse – if they can find the 6’6” giant’s head with at least one set piece delivery, expect him to get a Shot on Target (10/3).
Best Bets Summary
- Both Teams to Score – 4/7
- Tammy Abraham First Goalscorer – 4/1
- Player to have 1 Or More Shots on Target: Jannik Vestergaard – 10/3