Chelsea vs. Newcastle United Monday EPL Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Blues Defense Creates Value on Total
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images. Pictured: Thomas Tuchel.
- Chelsea leaps past Liverpool into the Premier League's top four with a win over Newcastle on Monday.
- The Blues' defense has improved hugely since new manager Thomas Tuchel has taken over and faces an unimpressive Newcastle attack.
- Kieran Darcy lays out the factors that lead him toward seeing value on the total.
Chelsea vs. Newcastle Odds
|Over/Under||2.5 (-165 / +132)|
|Day | Time||Monday | 3 p.m. ET|
Chelsea have a chance to leapfrog Liverpool and move into the top four on Monday, as the Blues host Newcastle in the final game of the Premier League matchweek.
Here’s a closer look at the two clubs, followed by a prediction.
Chelsea are now unbeaten in five games under new manager Thomas Tuchel. After a scoreless draw with Wolves in Tuchel’s debut, the Blues have won four straight if you include their 1-0 victory over Championship side Barnsley in the FA Cup on Thursday.
The improvement defensively has been particularly striking. Chelsea have conceded just one goal in those five matches, and that was an own goal in their most recent league game, a 2-1 victory at Sheffield United last Sunday.
Offensively, things aren’t clicking quite as well yet. Chelsea have scored only six goals in those five matches. And the underlying numbers tell a similar tale, with Chelsea posting a combined expected goals (xG) total of just 5.6 (according to FBref.com) in their four league matches under Tuchel.
But they’ve conceded 0.4 xG or less in each of those four matches, which is outstanding.
Newcastle are currently 17th in the table, but they’ve got a seven-point cushion on 18th-place Fulham.
Of more immediate concern is the absence of forward Callum Wilson due to a hamstring injury. Wilson is their leading scorer with 10 league goals, and no one else in the squad has more than four.
Wilson suffered the injury in Newcastle’s 3-2 win over Southampton last Saturday. The Magpies were rather fortunate to win that game, given that they were shorthanded after Jeff Hendrick was sent off early in the second half. Southampton topped them in xG, 1.4-0.8.
Newcastle also posted a surprising 2-0 victory over Everton the weekend before, but that was sandwiched in between was a 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace.
Betting Analysis & Picks
I think it’s pretty unlikely Newcastle will score in this match, given Chelsea’s defensive record of late and the injury to Wilson. So my initial impulse was Both Teams To Score — No, but that’s currently hovering around -160, which isn’t much fun. Nor is Chelsea to win at around -400 — yuck.
Instead, I’m looking at the total. Newcastle have conceded 38 league goals, but their xG conceded is only 32.2. They’ll be aiming to bunker down against Chelsea, particularly without Wilson, and Newcastle have conceded more than two goals just once in their past 11 league matches. Plus we’ve already documented Chelsea’s lack of punch so far under Tuchel.
I’ll take under 2.5 at plus-money.
Picks: Under 2.5 (+132)