Paul Merson states bold prediction for Chelsea v Stoke

Paul Merson is backing Stoke City to end Guus Hiddink's unbeaten Premier League run with Chelsea

Paul Merson believes Stoke City can spring an upset at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon.

The Potters head to the defending Premier League champions fresh from a 1-0 win against Newcastle United at the Britannia Stadium on Wednesday night.

I am going to go for a cheeky 2-1 Stoke win here, but ONLY because Chelsea have two big games coming up

Paul Merson

Chelsea haven’t lost in domestic competitions since Guus Hiddink replaced Jose Mourinho in December and were 2-1 winners at Norwich City earlier this week.

However, the west London side host Ligue 1 holders Paris Saint-Germain in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie after a 2-1 defeat in the French capital last month.

Former Arsenal playmaker Merson believes Hiddink’s Chelsea players could take their eye off the ball against Stoke with a big European game on the horizon next Wednesday.

“I am going to go for a Stoke win here, because Chelsea have a big week coming up – they have got PSG in the Champions League, then Everton in the FA Cup,” Merson told Sky Sports.

“So, given they surely can’t get into the top four, they have got to rest players for the two bigger games, in my opinion.

“Stoke could take advantage of that and I am going to go for a cheeky 2-1 Stoke win here, but ONLY because Chelsea have two big games coming up.”

Chelsea are in tenth place in the Premier League table but only eight points behind fourth-placed Manchester City, in the hunt for a place in next season’s Champions League.

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