Premier League Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Leeds United vs. Chelsea (Saturday, March 13)
Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images. Pictured: Chelsea standout Timo Werner gets a shot off against Everton.
- Chelsea journeys to Elland Road on Saturday for its Premier League match against Leeds United.
- The Blues have yet to lose a game in new manager Thomas Tuchel's tenure.
- Anthony Dabbundo breaks down the fixture and explains why he likes Chelsea to bag all three points below.
Leeds vs. Chelsea Odds
|Over/Under||2.5 (-130 / +108)|
|Day | Time||Saturday | 7:30 a.m. ET|
|Odds as of Friday evening via DraftKings.|
While Manchester City is running away with the Premier League title, it no longer has the league’s longest unbeaten run.
That now belongs to Chelsea, which is surging up the table under new manager Thomas Tuchel. The Blues, who haven’t lost a match under his command, visit Elland Road on Saturday for a showdown with Leeds United.
Once again, Chelsea is being undervalued by oddsmakers to take all three points from this match. Let’s see what might be in store in this contest.
With 11 league matches left, the Peacocks are comfortably in the mid-table. They’ve had some high-scoring defeats and victories, and done well in their first season back in England’s top flight. However, when Marcelo Bielsa’s side has matched up with the league’s top sides, it hasn’t fared as well.
For better or worse, Bielsa is notorious for his commitment to his high-intensity pressing system. It’s worked at times this season, especially early when Leeds scored three on Liverpool and should have beaten Manchester City. The Peacocks played Arsenal off the park in December, too. Yet, when it hasn’t against the more prepared big six teams, Leeds have been outclassed.
Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur all generated at least 2.4 expected goals against Leeds’ defense. These powerful sides have feasted on the Peacocks, and it’s a main reason I am playing against them.
The Blues’ defense had been leaking goals prior to Tuchel’s arrival, and the idea of defense through conservative possession has completely transformed Chelsea. Under Frank Lampard, the club played more open and free-flowing football, but that left them susceptible to clear attacks. Since Tuchel has taken over, the Blues are possessing the ball more and strangling opponents’ counterattacks before they can even start.
Chelsea held Manchester United, Liverpool and Everton to a combined 1.1 xG in its last three matches. The defense has been so improved since Tuchel arrived that I can’t get behind an over on the total here, even though I see a little value on the over 2.5 goals.
At the other end, the Blues’ attack sputtered in Tuchel’s first few games, but it has dramatically improved in recent weeks. He’s done an excellent job mixing and matching his attacking depth to beat the opponent.
Against Liverpool, Chelsea got Timo Werner in behind. Against Everton, Kai Havertz had his best game in a Blues shirt between the lines. Look for Werner to start and get in behind against Leeds, with Mason Mount’s improving pressing and passing play to help deal with the up-tempo nature of the game.
If Tuchel puts enough passers in the midfield, Chelsea should rip Leeds’ press apart and create more than enough to win this game.
Betting Analysis & Pick
Even though Chelsea is in top form right now, my projections still show the host undervalued in this match.
I have Chelsea on the money line at -160 and would play it all the way to -135 on the number. Stylistically, it’s a bad matchup for Leeds, as Tuchel is well-suited to the pressing he’s going to see from Bielsa’s side in this contest.
As Arsenal showed when it loaded its midfield with plus passers, Leeds can be passed through and will be defeated by Chelsea at Elland Road.
Pick: Chelsea ML (-145 or better)