Chelsea vs Newcastle preview: Blues bidding to end barren spell
Last Updated: 12/01/19 4:36pm
Chelsea will look to end their barren spell in front of goal when Newcastle visit Stamford Bridge on Saturday (kick-off 5.30pm).
Maurizio Sarri's men failed to score at Wembley in their 1-0 defeat to Tottenham but, more worryingly, they are without a goal in two home games following the defeat to Leicester and goalless draw with Southampton. A failure to find the net against the Toon would be the first time since 1993 that the Blues have drawn a blank in three consecutive home games.
"We need to score, of course," Sarri said.
"We need to solve this problem because also in the last match we played I think very well with continuity and a very good offensive and defensive phase, with a great performance from the physical point of view the best of the season.
"But we didn't score so now we have this problem. We only have to work and try and solve it as soon as possible, I think."
Meanwhile, Newcastle have just won one of their last eight league games and have serious problems troubling the top six teams. They have lost nine games on the spin to the 'big six'.
Alvaro Morata is an injury doubt for Chelsea.
The Spanish striker missed Tuesday's Carabao Cup semi-final first leg with Tottenham with a minor hamstring problem.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek (back) is out and Cesc Fabregas will not be considered ahead of his likely move to Monaco.
Rafa Benitez is having to manage a growing injury list, with Federico Fernandez, Mohamed Diame and Jonjo Shelvey all doubts for the trip to Stamford Bridge
- Chelsea have lost only one of their 23 home Premier League games against Newcastle (W16 D6), a 0-2 defeat in May 2012 under Roberto Di Matteo.
- Newcastle United have lost their last six visits to Stamford Bridge against Chelsea in all competitions, scoring just twice while conceding 18 goals.
- Chelsea have failed to score in their last two Premier League home games. They haven't gone three without a goal in the top flight since November 1993 under Glenn Hoddle.
- Newcastle are winless in 12 away league games against 'big six' sides (D1 L11), losing the last nine in a row.
- Only Liverpool (3) have conceded fewer home goals in the Premier League than Chelsea this season (8).
- Newcastle have scored just four goals in their last eight Premier League games, failing to find the net in three of the last four.
- Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez has won just one of his 14 away matches against Chelsea in all competitions (D4 L9), a 1-0 victory with Liverpool in the Premier League in October 2008.
- Chelsea's Eden Hazard has scored six goals and assisted one in five Premier League appearances at Stamford Bridge against Newcastle.
- Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud has scored more Premier League goals against Newcastle than he has against any other side in the competition (8). However, those eight goals all came in his first six games against them, with the Frenchman failing to score in his last five against the Magpies.
- Salomon Rondon has scored each of Newcastle's last three away goals in the Premier League.
Newcastle are right in the relegation mix. They rely on Salomon Rondon too much and they are struggling. I've watched Chelsea enough times this season and they are not ripping teams apart like they did at the start of the season, at times they don't really look like scoring a goal. Chelsea need to score early in the first quarter of the game to avoid a difficult afternoon. I think they will, but I wouldn't be surprised if this ended goalless.
PAUL PREDICTS: 1-0 (11/2 with Sky Bet)