Costa arrives at the Stadium of Light
Costa arrives at the Stadium of Light

Dropping points against Sunderland on Saturday wasn’t exactly the end of the world for Chelsea as The Blues did come out on top in all aspects except for scoring.  With 66% possession, twice the number of shots on goal (24 shots on goal to Sunderland’s 12) and four times as many corners earned, there was however one event that made the headlines more than most:  Diego Costa’s 55th minute yellow card.

Being his fifth yellow this season, Costa misses tonight’s game against Tottenham at Stamford Bridge.   Big deal?  It shouldn’t be.  On current form, it would seem that the team should be able to easily cope with Spurs without him.

Then again, Costa has been a prolific scorer at the Bridge so far this season. The Spaniard opened the scoring against Leicester, grabbed a hat-trick against Swansea, added another against Villa, made the result safe against Arsenal, and scored another against West Brom.

In fact, Costa has only failed to score once this season at home, being the 2-1 win over QPR.  Even with that kind of contribution missing it’s a pretty sure bet that the Blues machine will roll over Tottenham.

It’s a well publicised fact that Spurs have not won at Stamford Bridge since 1990.  Although they do seem to be better when playing away from White Hart Lane it’s the stronger home defence that should be the undoing of Tottenham this time. With 11 clean sheets in the last 14 home games it’s difficult to see Chelsea conceding, even if Roberto Soldado has ended his long goalless spell.  In contrast, Tottenham haven’t kept a clean sheet for seven Premier League games and this statistic provides the basis for the result.

SmartBets odds suggest that Chelsea will prevail yet again tonight and even without Diego Costa there is plenty of firepower left to break through the visitors’ leaky defence. Didier Drogba has long been a thorn in Spurs’ side, with scoring three and assisting four more goals in his previous eight Premier League games against them.   Don’t be surprised if he gives Hugo Lloris a very busy evening.