No one saw this coming for Watford and Chelsea.
Watford is in the bottom three at the moment and languishing near the bottom of the table with just two wins. Not the most promising of records for a team that took down one of the most admired sides in the Premier League last season, but then Watford has always had something of a fairytale sort of an existence in the top division. Watford fans have been a little confused as to what the fuss is all about since being promoted in 2015 after they, too, took the long road, spending five years in the Championship after beginning their climb up the table in 2013.
A fixture between these two sides with a glaringly mixed record seemed to be little more than a chance for Watford to beat another unimpressive opponent and get three points. But then it just went absolutely, absolutely nuts.
The most heart-stopping of the results was an earlier Saturday encounter that saw Watford lose 4-1 to Bournemouth thanks to an own goal by Angelo Ogbonna. Watford also lost by a single goal to Burnley on the previous Saturday, but now the Hornets find themselves facing a task on Sunday which is far more daunting. Watford travels to London to face Chelsea. The Blues are in desperate need of victory to keep their Premier League title bid in a positive frame of mind after a run of three losses. Watford’s poor form could be just what they need as the team searches for a positive way to end their miserable season.
Who wins? Watford, but not because of their attacking prowess.
The Hornets’ ground is full of problems and challenges. Antonio Conte’s Chelsea have not yet scored a league goal on the road, which is their goal differential worst. They will have to contend with a host of Watford players who have already scored or have goals in this season, such as Troy Deeney, Watford’s leading marksman with six goals. Watford also has the services of Olivier Giroud, who could be the perfect opponent to keep quiet to keep Chelsea scoreless in attack.
In order to maintain balance, Watford needs to make sure to keep their defensive pressure intact, which means keeping clean sheets. If they do not, and a Marco Silva team does not contain Chelsea, you can bet on this game being over by the end of the first half.
Date: Sunday, November 12th
Kick-off: 11:00 AM ET
TV Channel: NBC Sports Live
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
The Watford vs Chelsea clash will be available to watch live on NBC Sports Live Extra if you want to tune in and take in the action. You can also check out the early kick-off in the U.K. with BBC One.
The Watford vs Chelsea showpiece could turn out to be Chelsea’s best chance to seal a place in the quarter-finals of the Premier League and it will start at 1PM ET.
Will Watford deny Chelsea a dream run in the EFL Cup? Tune in to find out!
Jack Mirkinson is a reporter for AccuScore and host of the only UK-based soccer podcast in the world. You can hear him every weekday from 6AM to 8AM ET or listen live on iTunes and Stitcher.
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