If Chelsea stop Bale they should have too much for Spurs

Chelsea take their unbeaten Premier League record to White Hart Lane on Saturday and their first meeting with former manager Andre Villas-Boas, whose Spurs side have improved considerably in recent weeks after a shaky start.

Stop Gareth Bale and you certainly stop Wales and to a lesser extent if the Blues can cope with Bale they should have too much for Spurs.

This is a defining period of the season for Roberto Di Matteo’s team given that they meet Manchester United at Stamford Bridge twice before the end of the month and also travel to Donetsk on Tuesday in the Champions League.

Chelsea are 15/8 to take all three points with Spurs 8/5 and the draw at 12/5.

Eden Hazard was dropped from the Belgium starting line-up against Scotland in midweek but replaced Spurs’ Moussa Dembele at half-time and is 9/1 to grab the opener.

I expect there to be goals and three or more is 4/5 with two or fewer at evens.

Chelsea are 11/4 for the title behind Manchester City (13/8) and United (2/1) but this week will be the acid test of the new-look Blues.

If they have maintained their four-point lead at the top by the end of business on Sunday week they will no longer be third favourites for the title, that’s for sure.

Fulham entertain a progressive Villa on Saturday in a fascinating encounter although one they really ought to take all three points from.

I won’t be rushing out to back Martin Jol’s side at 4/5, with the draw at 14/5 and the visitors at 18/5.

At the time of writing it is hoped that Dimitar Berbatov will be fit to lead the line at Craven Cottage and the Bulgarian is 5/1 joint favourite with Hugo Rodallega to open the scoring.

Darren Bent, surely one of the most overrated players in the world, is 15/2 and a bigger threat may come from Christian Benteke (9/1), who impressed and grabbed the vital first goal for Belgium in their World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.

We seem to suggest every week that this is a vital game for QPR and Sunday is no exception.

Everton must do without Marouane Fellaini but have enough quality in their side to hurt Rangers, who must defend better than they did against West Ham in their last home game.

Everton are 5/4 to gain all three points with Rangers 23/10 and the draw at 5/2.

Djibril Cisse and Bobby Zamora are both 15/2 to score the opener and 2/1 to net at any time. The R’s need their expensive recruits to start finding the back of the net regularly.

Despite his latest vote of confidence Mark Hughes remains even-money favourite to be the next top-flight manager to lose/leave his post (Nigel Adkins 3/1) and he really needs three points on Sunday.

Everton have played and beaten Villa and Swansea on the road at the right time but I just have a feeling they will be playing Rangers at the wrong time on Sunday and take the Hoops to get that much needed first win of the season.

For all your weekend odds check out betvictor.com – including an enhanced 17/1 for Chelsea, Fulham and Rangers to all win this weekend.

Be lucky.


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