Soccer Picks: Basel vs. Chelsea Champions League Tips & Odds

Nila Amerova

Tuesday, November 26, 2013 12:50 PM GMT

Chelsea FC will be looking to avenge a home defeat to FC Basel when they descend on the Swiss side on match day 5. Can Chelsea come through on their favourable odds or will Basel mastermind the upset?

Chelsea FC shocked at Stamford Bridge

FC Basel stunned the sports betting world when they orchestrated the big upset over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge to kick start Champions League Group E action.  Chelsea started brightly with a goal from Oscar that gave them the lead going into halftime but two late goals by Basel turned the tie on its head and marked Basel’s first win on English soil.

Despite the shock defeat Chelsea got back on track with three straight wins over Steaua and Schalke and now they head to Basel knowing that a draw will suffice towards a spot in the last 16. Still expectation runs high and Group E leaders will want to do more than make a point in Basel surely.

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Sportsbooks install Chelsea as the runaway favourites at soccer odds of -118 to win outright in Switzerland, a price that clearly takes very little stock of the reverse between the pair. The way they bounced back goes towards explaining this market stance – not only did the Blues go on to win three straight but they did so rather convincingly without conceding a goal. Such form augurs well for Chelsea indeed.

On the flipside, FC Basel failed to build on that momentous occasion. They succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at home to Schalke 04 and then settled on back-to-back draws to a Romanian outfit that frankly hasn’t been playing up to scratch.

The win at Stamford Bridge marks their lone victory in a campaign that has gone 1-2-1 through four rounds and yielded an additional two goals while conceding three more. So it’s no wonder the Swiss have fallen out of favour across the board, installed as the hefty underdogs at +375 at Bet365.

FC Basel vs. Chelsea Betting Tips and Picks

It’s very hard to imagine Basel winning this clash even if they’ve already proved once to have the measure of the Blues. Chalk the result at Stamford Bridge as a one-off, helped along by Chelsea’s failure to take them seriously enough perhaps.

Therefore this leaves one of two possible outcomes in this game either a Chelsea win which is trading at -118 or a draw that is on offer at +260. Knowing that Chelsea needs but a point to secure advancement and that Jose Mourinho has a penchant for caution rather than risk popular opinion is leaning towards the draw as the most tempting and likely result in this reverse tie. 

But it’s a double-edged sword to play cautiously as it could open the Blues to the risk of another defeat to Basel, no? Unlikely though it might be the possibility that the Swiss could rise to the occasion exists – Stamford Bridge was case-and-point. So contrary to popular opinion, we’re plumping down to a Chelsea win here at -118 because the Special One will have taken a page from the last meeting and he will not want the same mistakes replicated.

In fact, Mourinho wasn’t cautious at all against West Ham United in the last lap of Premier League despite the importance of their midweek engagement in Champions League looming. His boys ran away comfortable 3-0 winners on the road – Lampard scoring twice and Oscar adding a third goal to lift the Blues to victory at Boleyn Ground. So if the impending date with Basel didn’t promote caution at the weekend why would it do so during the actual event? Of course we can’t pretend to know for certain what the Special One has in mind for Basel but if we’re to bet on it, then we’re banking on a win, a very convincing win at that as our value soccer pick.

Soccer Free Picks: Chelsea to win outright at -118 and Over 2.5 at -125.