Premier League Odds & Betting Picks: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Chelsea Preview (Monday, Sept. 14)
Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC for Getty Images. Pictured: Chelsea striker Timo Werner.
- Chelsea opens its 2020-21 Premier League campaign as the -175 favorite against Brighton & Hove Albion on Monday.
- Offseason additions Timo Werner and Kai Havertz will make their debuts for the Blues, and Jeremy Pond likes Werner to score in this match.
- Read more of Pond's picks for Monday's contest and his full betting analysis below.
Brighton vs. Chelsea Odds
|Brighton Odds||+475 [BET NOW]|
|Chelsea Odds||-175 [BET NOW]|
|Draw||+320 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-136/+110) [BET NOW]|
|Time||3:15 p.m. ET|
Opening week of Premier League action concludes Monday with an interesting match pitting Chelsea against host Brighton & Hove Albion.
If you reflect back on last season’s finish in England’s top flight, these clubs are coming off very different campaigns. Chelsea clawed its way to a brilliant Top-4 finish on the league table, which earned it a Champions League berth and return to European football this season.
On the other side, Brighton scrapped and fought much of the second half of the season to avoid being sent down to the Championship (England’s second tier) and wound up in 15th place.
This is important fixture for the combatants, with both sides and their respective supporters hoping to start things on a positive note.
Brighton & Hove Albion
The Seagulls found themselves in the aforementioned relegation battle, but steered their way clear of the bottom three clubs with some solid play.
With last season now in the rearview mirror, optimism abounds on the southern coast for the club starting its second consecutive season in England top’s flight.
Adam Lallana and Joel Veltman were two solid signings Brighton made prior to the start of season, which is a big reason the club, its fans and pundits alike think a Top-10 finish is not out of the realm of possibility.
Statistically, Brighton was one of the league’s worst in terms of data and overall analytics a year ago. The Seagulls ended their campaign with 40.8 expected goals against a dismal 55.1 expected goals against for a -14.3 expected goals differentials. That resulted in a -0.38 xGDiff for 90 minutes.
Expected goals (also known as xG) is an advanced statistic that gives an indication of whether results are based on sustainable factors like a steady creation of scoring chances, or whether it is down to aspects such as luck or outstanding goalkeeping.
The Blues broke the bank in the offseason, bringing in several big names to join an already loaded roster. Highlighting the haul arriving at Stamford Bridge were German stars Timo Werner, who came from Bundesliga side RB Leipzig, and former Bayer Leverkusen attacking midfielder Kai Havertz.
Those offensive-minded standouts alone have Chelsea gaffer Frank Lampard and the club thinking of more than just another Top-4 finish in the league. Instead, serious runs at the league and European titles are on their minds.
United States international Christian Pulisic, who, in my opinion, was Chelsea’s most valuable player last season, is still trying to regain full fitness during his recovery from a right hamstring injury suffered last season in the FA Cup final.
When combing over last season’s data, Chelsea was one of the league’s best on the statistical side. The Blues finished their campaign with 66.7 expected goals and 37.3 expected goals against for a +29.4 xGDiff, which translated into a +0.77 xGDiff for 90 minutes.
Despite the fact Chelsea won’t be at full strength, I still like its chances starting the campaign strong. Werner and Havertz will look to make an immediate impact on the Blues’ attack from the outset, which leads me to believe we’re going to see some goals at Amex Stadium.
With that in mind, I am backing the total to go over the number and playing Chelsea to score at least twice at Amex Stadium. I am also going to sprinkle a little on Werner to score during the match at right around even money.
Picks: Total Over 2.5 Goals -137; Chelsea Over 1.5 Goals -162; Timo Werner (Chelsea) To Score Anytime -103