No Naples respite for AVB

Chelsea have failed to win any of their last four games in all competitions

Chelsea travel to Italy on Tuesday to face Napoli of Serie A in the first-leg of the Champions League last-16 tie.

Napoli manager Walter Mazzarri will be serving a two-match touchline ban and defender Hugo Campagnaro is a doubt for the hosts. 

Under-fire Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas could be without captain John Terry but Ashley Cole is expected to be fit enough to return to the starting line-up. Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou have both returned from international duty with the Ivory Coast.

Chelsea have failed to win any of their last four games in all competitions. Top-scorer Daniel Sturridge was on the scoresheet at the weekend for the first time since Christmas and £50m striker Fernando Torres has not scored since September last year. The misfiring Blues have only once managed to score more than one goal in their last seven games.

Their task on Tuesday is to record a crucial away goal against a mean Napoli defence that has kept four consecutive clean sheets. In Edinson Cavani, Ezequiel Lavezzi and Marek Hamsik, Napoli also have a strong forward line and Cavani’s record of 53 goals in 74 appearances suggests that he is sure to pose a significant threat to an already vulnerable Chelsea defence.

Napoli have not been beaten in European competition at Stadio San Paolo since 1994, though they had a thirteen year absence from Europe between 1995 and 2008. They are currently languishing in seventh place in Serie A but it should not be forgotten that they qualified for the knockout stages from Group A at the expense of both Manchester City and Villarreal.

With Manchester United and Manchester City having been knocked out in the group phase, and Arsenal suffering a 4-0 first-leg defeat to AC Milan in the knockout stages, Chelsea represent the Premier League’s best hope of success in Europe’s elite club competition. They are clear favourites at 8/13 to qualify for the quarter-final and a positive result away from home is by no means out of the question, but William Hill’s odds of 7/5 represent excellent value for a first-leg Napoli win. A 2-1 home win is priced at a very generous 10/1 with Ladbrokes.

Recommended Bet:

Back Napoli to win @ 7/5 with William Hill

Written By:- Jaymes Monte (About our Authors)
Posted on:- 21/02/2012 - 11:08 AM
Filed in:- Champions League Betting News, Chelsea

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