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Grab gift of the Gab

Our Andy Schooler thinks Gabriel Agbonlahor looks a tad big at 3/1 to score against Chelsea in Saturday's Premier League game.

Last Updated: 11/05/13 at 14:49 Post Comment

Agbonlahor: Six goals in his last seven games

Agbonlahor: Six goals in his last seven games

Given his form, Gabriel Agbonlahor looks a tad big at 3/1 to score against Chelsea in Saturday's sole Premier League game.

Aston Villa have climbed away from danger in recent weeks, largely thanks to their England striker, and a win against Chelsea will secure their top-flight survival.

Here's Andy Schooler's preview of the televised clash.

Aston Villa v Chelsea (1245 BST)

Both these sides are now within touching distance of their long-standing Premier League goals.

Chelsea know victory will book their place in next season's Champions League; Villa will secure top-flight status if they triumph.

This hors d'oeuvre for the FA Cup final could therefore prove to be an entertaining one.

Villa have certainly improved in recent weeks with an impressive run of five wins from eight games being responsible for lifting them to the brink of survival.

Both teams have scored in seven of those matches - it's 4/6 that it occurs at Villa Park on Saturday - so while Villa's defence has continued to prove problematic, those further forward have been contributing well.

None more so than Gabriel Agbonlahor, who has six goals in his last seven matches. Never a man who appears to be enjoying his football, the England striker has nonetheless proved a serious goal threat.

He's hitting the ball early, usually a good sign that confidence is high, and despite all those goals having come against teams in the bottom half, Agbonlahor is certainly worth considering in the anytime scorer market. He's 3/1 to net in this one.

With Chelsea ready to rest a few ahead of Wednesday's Europa League final, backing Agbonlahor could well pay dividends here.

The Blues were beaten at Southampton the last time they had one eye on a big forthcoming game - their FA Cup quarter-final replay Manchester United over Easter - and although they have more recovery time on this occasion it's hard to see their final XI taking to the field at Villa Park, even given the top-four situation.

Remember whatever the result here they will get another chance at guaranteeing themselves Champions League football (at home to Everton next weekend).

In the outright market, Villa at 10/3 to win the game may well be worth considering given their form and the timing of this fixture. You can also get the draw on your side for even money in the double-chance market.

However, one worry would be that Villa's men could be scarred from the 8-0 drubbing handed out in the reverse fixture earlier in the season, while Chelsea also scored four in this game last term.

Their problems at the back certainly haven't been fixed so if you do fancy a Chelsea win, the fact that they can be backed to win 'not to nil' at 5/2 (Coral) as opposed to 10/11 in the match betting is worth noting.

Verdict: Aston Villa 2 Chelsea 2


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