Derby v Chelsea betting preview
Chelsea travel to Derby on Sunday in an FA Cup Third Round clash televised on BTSport 1 from 2.15pm.
The Blues have a remarkable recent record in this competition - lifting the famous trophy no less than four times in the last seven years. In fact, they've appeared in seven of the last 17 FA Cup Finals (over 40%), winning six.
Jose Mourinho certainly holds the FA Cup in high esteem and has vowed to field a strong side at Pride Park - his team arrive in good form having won their last 3 games, including a 3-0 win at Southampton on New Year's Day.
By contrast, Derby lost 1-0 at home to Wigan Athletic on New Year's Day, although that was their first defeat in 10 games and Steve McClaren's side are sitting comfortably in the Championship play-off places.
Nonetheless it's hard to argue with the bookmakers opinion, with the Blues available at no bigger than 9/20 with BetVictor and Ladbrokes - but given that Chelsea haven't conceded a goal in their last two Premier League away games (at Southampton and Arsenal), a bet on them winning this game 'to nil' is more appealing at odds of 17/10 with BetVictor.
Meanwhile, Derby are available at best odds of 7/1 with Betfred and William Hill and the draw at 4/1 with Bet365.
So far as goalscorer bets are concerned, it's been well reported that Chelsea strikers didn't score on the road in the Premier League in 2013 - although Fernando Torres at least started 2014 with a goal at Southampton. The Spaniard is 9/2 with Bet365 to open the scoring here, but at the prices we'd prefer a bet on his fellow countryman Juan Mata - who has a point to prove with Mourinho and can be backed at 9/1 with Ladbrokes to score first.
If Derby do score then that is likely to come from striker Chris Martin, who has scored 7 goals in his last 10 games and also takes penalties for the Rams. He is 10/1 with Paddy Power and Betfred to open the scoring and a tempting 4/1 with Betfred to score at any time.
Highly-rated midfielder Will Hughes - rumoured to be a target for Liverpool - is a stand-out 33/1 with Bet365 to score first (as short as 14/1 elsewhere) and 12/1 with Bet365 to score.
|Chelsea||To Win To Nil
|Juan Mata||First Goalscorer||9/1||Ladbrokes|