League leaders Chelsea meet Everton on Saturday in what promises to be a thrilling encounter. This is a must-win game for both teams. Chelsea will be conscious of the competition at the top of the table with as they, along with Arsenal and Manchester City vie to wrest the Premier League trophy away from current holders. Liverpool too aren’t too far behind. Everton, on the other hand, aim to grab the last remaining Champions League spot, and will want to challenge their Merseyside rivals Liverpool all the way till the final day of the season.
Chelsea seems to have finally found some rhythm under their coach, Jose Mourinho, and after a struggle at the start of the season, their good form, some dodgy refereeing and the unnecessary points dropped by their closest rivals in the title race means that the ‘Special One’s Little Pony’ sits rather precariously at the top of the table. Their form is impressive, if not excellent – they have won 4 of their last 6 games and have collected 14 points from a possible 18.
Everton, on the other hand, have a patchy form at present. The Toffees have picked up only 8 points from their last 6 matches, and have only 2 points from their last 4 away games, including a 4-0 drubbing at fellow Merseysiders Liverpool. Currently on 6th, manager Roberto Martinez will have to ensure that they bring their ‘A’ game if they want to be the first side since Mourinho took over Chelsea to win at London. Their biggest worry, however, will be their on-loan striker, Romelu Lukalu, who will be ineligible for this game, as his parent club is Chelsea.
An interesting statistic, as far as this match is concerned, is that Chelsea scores most of their goals in the final 10 minutes of the game – since the start of the season, the Blues have scored 20% of all their goals between the 80th minute and 90th minute. Everton, on the other hand, become the most lax at that time – 23% of all the goals that they concede are in this period.