West Brom v Chelsea Sat 15:00
Building on from last weekend’s victory over Bolton, Chelsea will travel to the Hawthorns on Saturday as odds on favourites with Totepool, with full knowledge that they can make the jump into fourth place should luck go their way.
Arsenal face a tough trip to Liverpool and face giving up their Champions League should they falter on the weekend.
Although West Brom won’t pose as big a threat as Liverpool, the Blues by no means have an easy fixture on their hands and will face a Baggies side that demolished high-flying Sunderland by four goals to nil last weekend.
Roy Hodgson’s side have scored nine goals in their last two outings and have gone from candidates for relegation to mid-table competitors in the space of two weeks.
Their return to form has much to do with the return to full fitness of their striker Peter Odemwingie, who has bagged five goals in his last two outings, including a hattrick against Wolves.
Jerome Thomas is struggling for Roy Hodgeson’s side after sustaining a hamstring injury in their win over Sunderland last week, while Chris Brunt is nearing full fitness after recovering from a broken foot. Similarly, midfielder Paul Sharner almost ready after sustaining a rib injury but may have to make due with a place on the substitutes bench.
The West Midlands outfit will undoubtedly find Chelsea to be a tougher test however and although they currently boast the fourth best form going into the fixture, they risk losing that attribute if they get complacent this weekend.
Andre Villas Boas has come under heavy fire this season following his new club’s poor form at times, failing to string together a decent series of results.
The West London club have won just one of their last six outings across all competitions that has included an FA Cup draw at home against Birmingham City and a 3-1 loss in Naples against Champions League opponents Napoli.
Surprisingly, West Brom’s away form has been better than their performances at home and their attack may have seen a boost in recent weeks but still appears to be an issue at home and averaging one goal per game at the Hawthorns this campaign, have the third worst home attack in the English top flight.
John Terry will still be absent from club duties with a knee injury and West Brom could face a winger issue with both Chris Brunt and Jerome Thomas expected to be absent through injury.