A place in the fifth round of the FA Cup awaits the winner of this replay at Villa Park on Wednesday night.
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Aston Villa vs Chelsea odds
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⚡Quick Aston Villa vs Chelsea betting tips
Aston Villa vs Chelsea predictions
Two years ago this week, Chelsea beat Plymouth Argyle in the fourth round of the FA Cup. It was part of an unbeaten run that eventually reached 10 matches.
In early February 2022 Chelsea had already booked their spot in the EFL Cup final, while their most recent Premier League outing brought a 2-0 defeat of Tottenham Hotspur. That result kept them third in the table.
Chelsea are once again through to an EFL Cup final. That is where the similarities end. It is remarkable how far the Blues have fallen since then.
Under Thomas Tuchel, the Blues won a Champions League and were consistently the closest challengers to Manchester City and Liverpool domestically.
Two years on, Chelsea are in the bottom half of the Premier League. They finished 12th last season and currently occupy 11th place in the standings. Over the last 18 months, Chelsea have been a mid-table team.
Their latest disappointment was perhaps the worst yet. A 4-2 home loss to Wolverhampton Wanderers was greeted by jeers from large sections of the Stamford Bridge crowd.
And who can blame them? Chelsea have spent more than £1 billion under Todd Boehly’s ownership, yet they are now in a much worse position. Little wonder Roman Abramovich’s name was chanted on Sunday.
For now Mauricio Pochettino’s position is safe. Yet Graham Potter was dismissed with the Blues in a similar position last term.
The Argentine has not covered himself in glory so far, but it is clear by now that the problems run deeper than the manager. The entire Boehly project is rightly being called into question and the American will no doubt be feeling the heat.
Chelsea could relieve some of the pressure by beating Aston Villa on Wednesday, but this will be a tough game.
📝 Aston Villa vs Chelsea betting tips
Chelsea are in a tough place right now and Aston Villa can compound their woes by winning this FA Cup tie.
Aston Villa to qualify – 4/6 (bet365)
After a run of three games without a win in all competitions, Aston Villa returned to form in emphatic fashion on Saturday. A 5-0 thrashing of Sheffield United at Bramall Lane was a boost to Villa’s chances of qualifying for next season’s edition of the Champions League.
That remains Villa’s primary objective this term, although some supporters would rather see their team lift a trophy.
Unai Emery’s men are among the favourites to triumph in the Europa Conference League, while a victory on Wednesday would set up a winnable fifth-round tie against either Leeds United or Plymouth.
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Villa were beaten 3-1 by Newcastle United in their last home game, but they have otherwise been magnificent when playing in front of their own fans this term. Indeed, the Villans have won 13 out of their 16 matches on familiar turf.
They have a good chance of making it 14 in 17 on Wednesday, but we recommend hedging your bets by tipping Villa to qualify for the next round instead. That wager would pay out with an extra-time or penalty shoot-out triumph, as well as one in 90 minutes.
Draw at half-time – 13/10 (bet365)
In 15 of Chelsea’s 23 Premier League games so far this season, the score has been level at half-time. That is the highest such figure in the division.
The Blues tend to go in at the break level pegging and Pochettino would surely settle for 0-0 or 1-1 after 45 minutes here.
Aston Villa, on the other hand, will be looking to make a fast start. If they were to score the first goal early on, Chelsea could struggle to recover.
However, if Emery names a changed side, it may well take a little longer for Villa to find their rhythm.
With that in mind, we might have to wait until the second period for one of these teams to take control of proceedings.
Moussa Diaby to score any time – 11/5 (bet365)
Pochettino will surely name a strong side for this match. The under-pressure Chelsea boss cannot afford to write any games off right now.
There has been talk that the Argentine is considering switching to a three-man backline. It is a system he has used in many of his previous jobs and several Chelsea players would – on paper at least – be suited to the formation.
There could be some initial teething problems, though, and this well-oiled Aston Villa team are primed to take advantage.
Emery will likely shuffle his pack to an extent, with Moussa Diaby among the contenders to come into the starting XI after beginning the Sheffield United win on the bench.
Chelsea have shipped eight goals in their last two games. Confidence in the camp will be low and Villa’s attackers will give them plenty to think about.
At the odds available, this looks like an attractive wager.
📺 How to watch Aston Villa vs Chelsea
- Location: Villa Park, Birmingham, England.
- Date and time: Wednesday 7 February 2024, 8pm.
- How to watch: ITV1.
About the author
Greg Lea is a freelance football writer from London. He predominantly covers the Premier League and has had work published by the Guardian, FourFourTwo, ESPN and others.
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