Sky Sports pundit predicts Aston Villa v Chelsea FC
Sky Sports pundit Charlie Nicholas is backing Chelsea FC to ease to a 3-1 win over Aston Villa on Sunday
Charlie Nicholas is backing Chelsea FC to ease to a 3-1 win over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Sunday afternoon.
The Blues will return to Premier League action against the Birmingham side after easing to a 4-0 victory over Everton in their last top-flight fixture back in March.
Chelsea FC will have the opportunity to extend their lead over fifth-placed Manchester United to five points after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were held to a 1-1 draw at Tottenham Hotspur on Friday night.
Frank Lampard’s side have the daunting prospect of the visit of defending Premier League champions Manchester City next week, underlining the importance of a win against Aston Villa this weekend.
Dean Smith’s side could prove a challenge given that Aston Villa have already got 90 minutes of Premier League action under their belt following a 0-0 draw with Sheffield United on Wednesday night.
Sky Sports pundit Nicholas is backing Chelsea FC to ease to a comfortable win against Aston Villa to strengthen their bid to finish in the Champions League qualification spots.
“All of a sudden the relegation picture can change massively at the weekend,” Nicholas told Sky Sports.
“If Bournemouth win and West Ham earn a point Villa will have to take a bit more of a risk. Jack Grealish played well against Sheffield United, while John McGinn got 60-65 minutes under his belt.
“There is absolutely nothing inspiring either up front or on the wings. Grealish can pick a pass, but you need people to work and run in behind.
“McGinn can do that, and so can Conor Hourihane. He works well with Grealish. Get them two to make the runs in behind and it will give them a chance.
“Chelsea are not the greatest at defending that scenario but they can counter-attack. Villa need to gamble.
“Mason Mount and Billy Gilmour could stay in the team, Tammy Abraham will be fit and fresh, and Olivier Giroud will want to do something, but there is nothing at the end of the summer to play for, so it is a sprint finish.
“I can see Chelsea picking Villa off.”
Chelsea FC confirmed their second summer signing last week after the Blues reached an agreement with RB Leipzig to sign Germany international Timo Werner when the transfer window opens.
The Blues have already secured a deal to sign Morocco international Hakim Ziyech from Dutch side Ajax on 1 July.
Chelsea FC have won nine of their last 10 games against Aston Villa to underline their dominance of this fixture.
However, Lampard’s side have a miserable away record in 2020, having drawn three times and lost once.
The Blues haven’t won a Premier League game outside of the English capital since 2 November.
Chelsea FC will host defending Premier League champions Manchester City in their next top-flight fixture on Thursday night.