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The Punt preview
Nic Ladds 13th Aug 2009 - 20:14

Chelsea set to start as they mean to go on

The season may not have started but you get the feeling it is going to be a tough season for Hull and the doom mongers will not even be tempted by odds of 20/1 on offer about an opening day victory for Phil Brown's side.

They couldn't have wished for a harder opening game, a trip to Stamford Bridge to take on Carlo Ancelotti's 1/6 chances Chelsea, who will be looking to get their title challenge off to the best possible start.

While the Blues may not have made too many summer signings, Hull have purchased the likes of Seyi Olofinjana and Jozy Altidore, two names who don't have the same impact as Didier Drogba or Frank Lampard on the team sheet.

It is worth noting that Chelsea have scored 33 opening weekend Premier League goals - more than any other club which will have punters steaming in to the 4/7 on offer about over two match goals, but the value could in fact be on under two goals at 16/5 or exactly two at 3/1.

The Tigers will be unlikely to score a victory but shouldn't be embarrassed on the opening day as they will no doubt adopt a cautious approach and be well-organised at the back.

A correct score of 1-0 or 2-0 to Chelsea looks the call available at 6/1 and 11/2 respectively or for those that fancy a repeat of last season, 0-0 can be backed at 14/1 or a draw on the match betting is 11/2.

With few new signings it is the usual suspects lining up for Chelsea in the first goal scorer market with Nicolas Anelka and Drogba both at 10/3 to score first and it is a case of take your pick as Ancelotti looks willing to start the pair together unlike managers before him.

Frank Lampard is of course always a threat at 5/1 and if the match is sewn up then perhaps keep an eye out for new youngster Daniel Sturridge getting a run out who could be worth a small bet at 11/2 to score the last goal.

Geovanni looks Hull's main threat if he turns up in the mood to fire in some of his speciality free kicks that terrorised defences at the start of last season and if the away side are to breach then he could be the man at 6/1 to score anytime.

After Phil Scolari's disastrous reign as Chelsea manager, Ancelotti will be anxious to get off to a good start and will not tolerate lacklustre performances, especially against a team already considered relegation fodder.

Second season syndrome looks destined to be set in over Hull and as much as it is tempting to try and make a case for the Tigers due to the 20/1 on offer about a win for them, it is almost impossible to find a reason why they can win.

A neat and efficient performance is expected from Chelsea resulting in a victory to nil for the home side, in what could be a sign of things to come under the new Italian regime.


Chelsea to win 2-0 - 11/2

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