Weblog: The football punter

Chelsea should have too much quality for BATE

Europa League
BT Sport 2, 8pm Thursday

Chelsea have been making hard work of a weak Europa League section but can follow up 1-0 wins over PAOK and MOL Vidi with a more convincing victory against BATE Borisov.

Eden Hazard and Jorginho are among the players held back for Sunday’s trip to Burnley but BATE are still up against a team packed with quality.

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The Belarusian champions had a mixed start to the group, winning 2-0 away to MOL Vidi and losing 4-1 at home to PAOK, and need some points from the next two clashes with Chelsea to have a credible chance of progressing.

However, they lost 6-0 at Arsenal on their last visit to the capital in December 2017 and may be heading for a heavy defeat at Stamford Bridge.


Chelsea to win to nil

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Match in Focus

15:00 Mo 27May SKY

Aston Villa v Derby

Home WinDrawAway Win
Key stats
  • Tammy Abraham has scored in five of his last seven starts for Aston Villa.
Expert verdict
Aston Villa have lost just two of their last 15 matches and valid excuses can be made for both defeats. Dean Smith made wholesale changes with the playoffs in mind for their 2-1 loss to champions Norwich on the final day, while they lost the second leg of semi-final at West Brom despite having 73 per cent possession and winning the shot count 24 to ten. They are full of confidence and should be more determined than ever after last season’s playoff final heartbreak.