Champions League: Chelsea to seal progress with Leverkusen win
Chelsea rarely win in Germany, but victory at Bayer Leverkusen would see them progress through the group stages of the Champions League for the ninth successive season.
Andre Villas-Boas’ team may have lost three of their last four Premier League games, but they have been far more their expected selves in Europe.
Chelsea’s odds are 11/10 to beat Leverkusen and a victory would ease the current pressure on Villas-Boas after his disappointing results domestically.
Meanwhile, a triumph would take him one step closer to arguably the main reason he was appointed at Stamford Bridge in the summer – winning the Champions League.
However, Chelsea have only won on one of their five previous trips to Germany.
The chance to move top of Group E is all the incentive Leverkusen need heading into the clash as they are currently two points behind Chelsea.
Leverkusen are 5/2 in the Champions League odds to triumph, which could prove great value given they have triumphed in both of their home fixtures in the competition thus far.
It is 9/4 that the clash ends as a draw which is a result that would maintain Chelsea’s unbeaten record.
Fernando Torres may be under fire for his lack of goals but he has been directly involved – either scoring or assisting – in four of Chelsea’s previous six Champions League goals.
Backing the Spaniard to score first at 5/1 looks an extremely tempting bet considering Ladbrokes are offering money back on losing first scorer bets if your chosen player scores at any time in the game
Elsewhere in Group E, Valencia should have little trouble keeping their hopes of finishing in the top two alive with a home success over Genk.
Valencia are 1/6 to beat Genk and they would move above Leverkusen if the Germans fail to beat Chelsea.
A Genk victory is hard to expect but the draw is priced at 11/2 and five of their last six encounters with Spanish opposition have ended all square.