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Middlesbrough v Chelsea Betting Odds, Preview and Predictions

Quarter final spot against Man United awaits Boro or Chelsea

24th February 2013 / Lee A Jackson
Mata - Lampard (Chelsea)

Middlesbrough v Chelsea Betting Preview
A fascinating encounter as both sides are looking to discover a bit of form. Chelsea have been struggling going forward lately and aren’t playing with a lot of confidence or conviction. After a strong start to the Championship season, Middlesbrough’s hopes of securing a play off sport are beginning to wane after just one league win in their last nine. Can the home side fine some respite in pulling off a big FA Cup shock?

Middlesbrough v Chelsea Betting Odds at online bookmaker BetFred
Chelsea 2/5, Draw 7/2, Middlesbrough 6/1

Middlesbrough v Chelsea Recommended Bet:
The home side are heavy underdogs for this FA Cup fifth round tie, after slumping badly. Boro have now lost six of their last nine fixtures in all competitions, and they haven’t found much sanctuary at the Riverside. Boro do look vulnerable at the back, and certainly not tight enough to perhaps keep Chelsea off the scoresheet. That having been said, Boro haven’t been that bad going forward this season, but they have a 0 goal difference in the Championship this season, again, being let down by the defence. They lost again on the weekend, at the Riverside against Millwall, and they just don’t look a cohesive, confidence side. However, they will need little motivation to pull a big night out of the bag as Chelsea come to down. It is a massive chance for them to put some smiles on the faces of fans again.

 

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The last time that they hosted Chelsea in the FA Cup at the Riverside was back in the 1992/93 season, a game with Boro won 2-1. Since then they have lost twice against Chelsea in the competition at Stamford Bridge. The last time that Boro did host Chelsea was in the 2008/09 Premier League season when Chelsea romped to a 5-0 win. Boro have lost their last two at home against Chelsea, conceding a total of seven goals and failing to score themselves. This could be a big ask for Boro given their current form, but then Chelsea are not exactly rocking along at a good old pace at the moment. Chelsea of course are a very good FA Cup side, having won it in four of the last six seasons and they are the defending champions. Another tournament win this season would at least give the Blues something to cheer about after a bit of a lacklustre season all around.

Chelsea were very poor at home against Sparta Prague in the Europa League last Thursday, only a late piece of magic from Eden Hazard rescuing a draw in stoppage time. Chelsea just don’t look that threatening going forward. If Hazard, Oscar and Juan Mata aren’t creating, then nothing is really happening. But they aren’t playing a bold enough, nor expansive enough game even with all that talent at their disposal. They were well beaten by Man City in the big Premier League clash on Sunday and the Blues are looking a spent force. They really may have to push hard for the FA Cup here, making up for their disappointment of losing the League Cup semi final against Swansea. Not a confident side either, but they have the quality in depth and individual talent for someone just to nick it for them. A quarter final match against Manchester United awaits the winner.

With Boro losing three of their last five matches at the Riverside, the Blues should be able to sneak through this one. They usually turn it on in the cup and would look for Lampard or Mata as First Goalscorer with both of them around 5/1 at online bookmaker BetFred.

Form
Middlesbrough LLWLDL, Chelsea LWWWDL

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