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Spurs vs. Chelsea Odds, Picks, Prediction: Expect Tense London Derby (Sept. 19)

Spurs vs. Chelsea Odds, Picks, Prediction: Expect Tense London Derby (Sept. 19) article feature image

Marc Atkins/Getty Images. Pictured: Romelu Lukaku.

Spurs vs. Chelsea Odds

Spurs Odds +425
Chelsea Odds -140
Draw +280
Over/Under 2.5 (+105/ -130)
Day | Time Sunday | 11:30 a.m. ET
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The soccer world’s eyes will turn to North London late on Sunday morning, when Tottenham Hotspur host Chelsea in the Premier League.

Despite having won three of their first four league games, Spurs are down in seventh because of a neutral goal difference. Chelsea have one more point and are second in the Premier League following a dominant start to the season.

Let’s break down both sides in this matchup.

New Season, Same Problems for Spurs

Last week’s blowout loss at Crystal Palace was coming for Spurs.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s team had a negative expected goal difference entering the match at Selhurst Park, despite having won its first three games. A lack of playmaking in midfield was on full display against Palace, who dominated the ball and dictated the tempo of the game.

It continued a trend that was clear from Spurs’ first three games, despite them winning those matches: Nothing has changed from last season, or things have gotten worse.

Through four games, Spurs have a -3.32 non-penalty expected goal difference (NPxGD). That’s 15th in the league.

Spurs are still playing the same old 4-2-3-1 formation that Jose Mourinho utilized, and there’s still a significant lack of creativity outside of Son Heung-min and Harry Kane, the latter of whom hasn’t scored this season through 193 minutes and has registered just 0.57 expected goals (xG).

Dele Alli has somehow played every minute of the season, despite having been subpar for the past few years. He has 0.94 xG in 360 minutes, and 0.72 of that came from a penalty that he scored.

It’s the same thing against big teams for Spurs: Try to hit them on the counter. It fortunately worked in the season opener against Manchester City, although Son’s goal in that game was a bit of a fluke, and the reigning league champions won the xG battle 2.11-1.06.

Nothing has changed for Spurs, and they appear set for a rude awakening on Sunday.

Chelsea are Good, But Regression Looms

Chelsea have a +8 goal difference this season, although their NPxGD is just +3.17. Some of the Blues’ finishing this season has been absolutely stellar, with impressive goals coming from outside the box and incredible angles on set pieces.

This usually means a couple things. First, it signifies that a team has an immense amount of quality in front of goal, which is the case for Chelsea. Romelu Lukaku has three goals through his first three league games on 2.53 xG.

Outside of Lukaku, Chelsea’s six remaining league goals have been scored from 4.09 xG. This is one of the best teams that money can buy, so there’s no denying its quality.

Second, numbers like that indicate that some regression might be coming. Trevoh Chalobah’s goal registered just 0.02 xG, while Marcos Alonso has just 0.27 because his goal was a stunning free kick.

For example, Chelsea have two 3-0 wins at home this season, over Palace and Aston Villa. In those two wins, the Blues netted six times on a combined 2.41 xG.

Defensively, Chelsea are as stable as they come. They’ve allowed just one goal this season and it came from the penalty spot against Liverpool.

The Blues have allowed 3.45 NPxG this season, so they’re going to concede eventually. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that it happens this week against Spurs, but I wouldn’t call it likely.

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Betting Analysis & Pick

The market has surprisingly adjusted quickly to Spurs, who are clearly well below the top four in the Premier League. Their team over/under for this game at 0.5 is -150/+115.

I see value on the under there, given Spurs’ lack of creativity and goal-scoring record this season. I’ll recommend that, while also suggesting that a scoreless first half at +160 is also great value.

Chelsea are likely to have more possession, but I don’t necessarily see them applying the kind of pressure they did on Arsenal earlier in the season. The Blues will have more respect for the Spurs counter attack, but not much more.

Pick: First Half Under 0.5 Goals (+115)

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