While Tottenham Hotspur have got themselves back into the race for a top-four spot in the Premier League, the club revealed at the start of the week that Son Heung-min has been ruled out for a number of months with a broken arm. Although there remains a small possibility of the South Korea international returning before the end of the season, Jose Mourinho has insisted that he does not expect the versatile attacker to make another appearance before the closing weeks of May. With Harry Kane also sidelined until at least the middle of April, it leaves the North London outfit short of options down the middle ahead of the trip to Chelsea on Saturday, a game which is being played just three days after the Champions League game with RB Leizpig. However, that should not stop you from backing Mourinho to get one over his former club at the weekend.
When looking for all of the relevant statistics when making your football predictions ahead of the next round of fixtures in England's top flight, you will see that Chelsea should be scoring more goals based on the amount of chances they create, something which could improve when taking on a Spurs outfit who have generally struggled for clean sheets. However, regardless of Spurs being without Kane or Son, that should not hinder their efforts to get the better of opponents who have shown in the past that runners from deep generally cause them more problems than a traditional number nine. That was the case when Southampton outclassed the Blues in West London on Boxing Day, with Chelsea leaving too much space in behind, while other visiting teams have found it too easy to move Chelsea's defenders out of position, with Ajax are another example of a team who were able to dissect Frank Lampard's backline at will during November's 4-4 draw in the Champions League.
In that same game, Chelsea showed for the umpteenth time that they were susceptible from set pieces and when balls get delivered into the box, a negative aspect of their game which has not improved over the past three months. Newcastle United and Manchester United have each scored decisive goals in Premier League fixtures from set pieces since the middle of January, and Mourinho will have identified this area as one to exploit. Do not be surprised to see the Portuguese opt for a physical-looking lineup, aware that Chelsea will also be missing the energy of the injured N'Golo Kante in the middle of the pitch.
Back in the reverse fixture in December, Lampard surprised Spurs and Mourinho by reverting to a back three, a move which ultimately paid off with two first-half goals. With Kante joining a growing injury list, circumstances may dictate that Lampard uses a similar strategy, providing an opportunity for the likes of Marcos Alonso to come back into the fold. While that may benefit Chelsea offensively, it will only offer more space to Steven Bergwijn and Lucas Moura going the other way, as well as Dele Alli who could flourish in a free role inbetween a wide-apart back three and a two-man Chelsea midfield.
Taking everything into consideration, both teams will feel confident when it comes to creating plenty of chances on Saturday afternoon, and you cannot really go wrong with betting on more than 2.5 goals in the match. However, as far as the result is concerned, there is considerable value in backing Spurs, despite their indifferent away record and that they should offer numerous clear-cut opportunities to their hosts.