The Bridge Opens Its Doors On The New Campaign

Marin: Still Out With Hamstring InjuryChelsea have no fresh problems ahead of tonights game, with new midfielder Marko Marin still struggling with a hamstring injury, although Ramires may come back into the frame after falling ill for the Wigan game.

I expect Di Matteo to keep the side that got off to a flyer against Wigan, hoping Eden Hazard can perform again, after showing the Premier League why he collected most assists in Ligue 1 last season, with two in seven minutes on Sunday.

Fernando Torres will no doubt be looking to benefit on the new improved service, after being unlucky not to notch against the Latics last weekend.

The Royals will find it hard to break the Chelsea defence as it is, but with Kebe, Roberts, and Karacan sidelined, that task has increased a little more, although Adam Le Fondre and Pavel Pogrebnyak have certainly got goals in them.

With other potential title challengers stumbling on day one, Chelsea have the chance to show they are serious about another title challenge, and the odds of just 2/7 of them to win definitely sides with that thought.

There is definitely still value to be had in this game though, you can back them to win to nil at EVS, as they did against Wigan. Also, if they get off to the sort of start they did in that game, the Chelsea HT/Chelsea FT at 8/11 looks promising, as does the 6/4 that they win both halves.

I can’t see past a Chelsea win, but if you fancy the draw, then 1-1 has to be worth a look at a high 9/1, but the Chelsea win and Under 2.5 goals looks a pick to me, at 12/5, which basically bets that we would either win 1-0 or 2-0.

My favoured bets are:

Chelsea to win to nil @ 1/1
Chelsea + Under 2.5 goals @ 12/5
Le Fondre to score at anytime @ 4/1
Terry FGS @ 14/1

Prediction: Chelsea 2 (Hazard, Torres) Reading 0

By Brad Smith



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