Chelsea are available at close to even money ahead of Saturday night’s home match against Southampton.
Their odds – Ladbrokes and Coral are both offering the Blues at 4/5 – reflect just how far Jose Mourinho’s men, who start the weekend 14th in the Premier League table, have fallen since last season.
Formerly regarded as home bankers against almost any opposition, Chelsea at Stamford Bridge are no longer the slick winning machine they once were.
As a result, the Saints will arrive in West London this weekend with genuine hope of picking up three points.
Here are three reasons Southampton could inflict another defeat on Mourinho and co…
3. Stamford Bridge fear factor has died
As touched on above, Chelsea’s home form has slumped. They have already lost to Crystal Palace and drawn with Swansea City at the Bridge this season.
Meanwhile, the Saints have kept clean sheets in four of their six away games in all competitions, so Ronald Koeman’s side will not be broken down easily.
2. Indefensible Chelsea
Chelsea boasted the best defence in the Premier League last season, but only Sunderland have conceded more goals than the Blues so far this term.
John Terry is no longer considered good enough to start every game, while Kurt Zouma and Gary Cahill have yet to strike a formidable partnership.
Like Terry, Branislav Ivanovic returned from his summer break as a significantly worse player, while the Blues look flimsy in midfield.
This goal, conceded in last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Newcastle United, perfectly sums up Chelsea’s defensive woes. Do Zouma and Ivanovic even know each other!?
1. When the Saints attack
Southampton are ready to pounce on any gifts offered by Chelsea’s struggling backline.
The Saints have found the net 11 times in their last three matches and they have many goal-getters in their attacking arsenal.
Strikers Jay Rodriguez, Shane Long and Graziano Pelle have already netted 13 goals between them this season – three, four and six respectively – while Sadio Mane and Dusan Tadic have chipped in with four each.
With so many offensive players in hot form, Chelsea could be in for a nasty night on Saturday.