Chelsea v Steaua Bucharest Betting Preview
The Romanian side are standing in the way of Chelsea’s European hopes this season as they meet in the first leg out in Bucharest. The Romanians caused a big upset in the round of 32 when they toppled AFC Ajax, Steaua triumphing in the first ever penalty shoot out in the Europa League. Can they claim another big scalp with Chelsea looking patchy in Europe this season?
Chelsea v Steaua Bucharest Betting Odds at online bookmaker Bet365
Chelsea Evens, Draw 5/2, Steaua Bucharest 3/1
Chelsea v Steaua Bucharest Recommended Bet:
This is the first meeting between the two clubs and the Romanians will be in high spirits after winning through as underdogs against Ajax. Steaua have quite a long history against English sides, their overall record against teams from England standing at W4 D4 L6. At home, that record starts to look quite impressive at W4 D2 L1. However, they are on the wrong end of a trend against English opposition, as they haven’t won in their last five, either home or away. Also, Steaua Bucharest have never actually won a game in England and are on a four match losing streak there. So this first leg on home turf is going to be mightily important to them you feel.
After losing their first leg against Ajax, they became only the second team in Europa League history to overcome a two goal deficit from the first leg and win through. The Romanians have conceded more goals than any other side in the Europa League this season (eleven so far). That is the same amount as they have scored as well, so there should be chances for Chelsea in this one. Chelsea haven’t looked that impressive in Europe this season at all. They stumbled through the round of 32 against Sparta Prague. After winning the first leg against the Czech’s, only a late equaliser from Eden Hazard back at Stamford Bridge stopped the tie going to extra time and a potential shootout.
Chelsea have only ever met Romanian opposition once before, that was back in the 2008/09 Champions League group stage where they faced CFR Cluj. Chelsea drew in Romania on that occasion and then edged a 2-1 win back at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea dominated their home game on the weekend in the Premier League against West Brom, but could still only find one goal for all their efforts. Nothing exactly stellar about Chelsea’s play or prowess at the moment, but you would imagine that they have the class to get through this. Any kind of reasonable result out in Romania should see them well in control. The Blues have been very low key away from home in Europe this season, and after beating Ajax 2-0 in their last match, Steaua will need to grab this match by the scruff of the neck. It probably won’t be that exciting of a night, but the Premier League side should edge it.
Chelsea WWDLWW (all competitions), Steaua WWLDLW (Europa League)
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