Premier League: Chelsea vs Brighton preview

Chelsea will be looking to record their second consecutive Premier League win when they face Brighton at Stamford Bridge in London on Wednesday. The reverse fixture was played in December and the Blues won it 2-1 with first-half goals from Pedro and Eden Hazard while Solomon March reduced the arrears for the Seagulls in the second half. That was the ninth consecutive victory for Chelsea over Brighton, and the two sides have met just eleven times. The first meeting was all the way back in 1933 in the FA Cup and it was the only match that Brighton ever won against Chelsea.

Chelsea are still in the race for a top-four finish and it was last weekend's 2-1 victory at Cardiff that kept them in that chase. However, that victory was achieved thanks to a controversial late goal from Ruben Loftus-Cheek and it came after a 2-0 defeat at Everton before the international break. The Blues are down in sixth place, one point behind fourth-placed Tottenham and Manchester United and two behind third-placed Arsenal. N'Golo Kante and Eden Hazard started last weekend's match on the bench so they should be fit enough to make the starting eleven on Wednesday.

Brighton are getting closer to securing their survival in the Premier League for another season, normally they shouldn't need more than two victories in the last eight matches to seal the deal. They are currently five points clear of the relegation zone but they have a game in hand on eighteenth-placed Cardiff. However, last weekend the Seagulls lost 1-0 at home against fellow relegation candidates Southampton and they also have the FA Cup to worry about, they will face Manchester City in the semi-finals. Pascal Gross and Florin Andone remain injured for the visitors.

Probable line-ups:

Chelsea: Arrizabalaga - Azpilicueta, Christensen, Luiz, Emerson - Kante, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek - Hudson-Odoi, Giroud, Hazard

Brighton: Ryan - Montoya, Dunk, Duffy, Bernardo - Propper, Stephens, Bissouma - Knockaert, Murray, March

My prediction: Chelsea to win 2-0, the Blues should give everything they've got to win this one, otherwise they will slip further behind in the race for a top-four finish.

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Chelsea win - 1.25
Draw - 6.50
Brighton win - 15.00

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