Chelsea face Valencia in what is effectively a Champions League eliminator. With the two sides level on points in Group E, where is the betting value in this high pressure showdown?


Advice:
Over 2.5 Goals (1.94 Betfair)

Match Odds

At 1.75, Chelsea are well fancied by bookmakers to see off the Spanish challenge posed by Valencia (5.00). The Blues however, are probably best watched at those prices, as recent European ties have ended with a draw in Genk and defeat at the hands of Bayer Leverkusen.

The two previous ties between these sides in London have ended all-square at 1-1 and 0-0. Also, Valencia have drawn the last four games they have played away at English clubs, so at a best price of 3.75 with Bet365, the draw is worthy of consideration.

Qualification Permutations

The real story to this game however, is the intriguing situation that these two sides find themselves in, in terms of making it to the final 16. Level on 8 points each in Group E, the winners of this game will go through, the losers will be out. Added to that, a score draw will see the Spaniards through, but a 0-0 draw sees Chelsea progress. A scoreless draw would however, only be good enough for the Blues if Bayer Leverkusen do not slip up away at Genk.

All this really boils down to, is that in order to progress, both sides know they must score. The usual European rules of cagey away sides, and ‘useful away points’ is thrown to the wind. Valencia know they will have to score at least once, and that changes the dynamics of the game significantly.

Verdict

Both sides know they must score to go through, and that makes goals likely. ‘Both teams to Score‘ is a best price 1.83 with Coral, but I see better value in the 1.94 available with Betfair on ‘Over 2.5‘ goals. Chelsea have not been as defensively strong this season as they have in previous years, and even if the contest is tight for the first hour, the fireworks will undoubtedly come, the tournament future of both clubs relies on it.