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Nottingham Forest v Chelsea – Preview, Predictions and Best Bets

Nottingham Forest face Chelsea in the Premier League on Saturday.

Forest v Chelsea

Nottingham Forest face Chelsea in the Premier League on Saturday. The hosts sit three points above the drop zone but could be safe if Luton loses at West Ham. The Blues have jumped to seventh in the table after just one league defeat in 12 matches.

Nottingham Forest Form

After a four-point deduction for FFP breaches, Nottingham Forest are just three points above the relegation places. A win would seal safety due to their goal difference. A five-match winless run in the league saw just two points accrued. A 3-1 home win vs Fulham was a key result to boost morale.

After that win, a four-match winless streak followed as they lost 3-1 at Tottenham and drew 2-2 at home to Wolves. A 2-0 loss at Everton was damaging and they were somewhat unfortunate in a 2-0 home loss to Man City. Last weekend, they came from 1-0 down to get a crucial 3-1 win at already-relegated Sheffield United.

Nottingham Forest Team News

Neco Williams is the only injury for Nuno Espirito Santo. An unchanged XI is expected from the win at Bramall Lane. Chris Wood will lead the line in preference to Taiwo Awoniyi.

A 4-2-3-1 shape is expected although it’s possible that Anthony Elanga could be benched for an extra defender in Moussa Niakhate. Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ola Aina will form the left flank against their former club.

Nottingham Forest Motivation

The motivation of Forest could depend on the result of West Ham vs Luton. A defeat for the Hatters and Forest will effectively be safe before this match kicks off.

However, a Luton win and this match becomes crucial. A point would be needed at least.

Chelsea Form

Chelsea have lost just once in 12 home matches with their home form – nine wins in the last 11 in the league at Stamford Bridge – proving the base for some improvement. A 6-0 win over Everton boosted confidence but a 1-0 loss to Man City in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley followed.

A 5-0 drubbing at Arsenal was perhaps the lowest point of the season. Chelsea fought back a few days later to draw 2-2 at Aston Villa from 2-0 down with 71% possession. Successive home wins with clean sheets followed. They beat Tottenham 2-0 and then destroyed West Ham 5-0 with 4.22 xG.

Chelsea Team News

After 14 players missed the Spurs win, Chelsea welcomed back six options vs West Ham. Thiago Silva, Axel Disasi, Levi Colwill, and Malo Gusto are all available again in defence but Reece James and Ben Chilwell are out.

Enzo Fernandez and Romeo Lavia are absent in midfield, but Lesley Ugochukwu could return. Raheem Sterling and Christopher Nkunku are available but are set to feature as substitutes.

Chelsea Motivation

The Blues can see a European place up for grabs. The fifth spot is a bit far off, but they could grab sixth place in the table.

This match is a must-win in that fight for Europa League or Conference League football.

Key Stats

Nottingham Forest have won just 2 of their last 12 matches

Forest are 12 matches without a clean sheet

Nottingham Forest have lost 7 of their last 12 league home matches

Chelsea have just 3 clean sheets in their last 6 matches (0 clean sheets in 13 before that)

Chelsea have lost just 1 of their last 12 league matches

Chelsea’s Palmer has scored 26 goals this season


The Blues are starting to click whilst Forest have struggled at the City Ground. A Chelsea win with Palmer on target looks like the best bet.

Best Bet: Chelsea win at 2.00

Value Bet: Chelsea win and both teams to score at 3.15

Goalscorer Tip: Palmer to score anytime at 1.95

James is a football analyst who writes about the tactics of the PSL and English Premier League. He holds the UEFA A coaching licence and has previously worked for several clubs in analysis roles.Twitter:

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