EPL

The Numbers Game: Chelsea look to extend Tottenham dominance as Kane eyes record

By Sports Desk August 12, 2022

Premier League football returned with a bang last week, and the second round of matches throws up the first clash between two sides anticipated to be right in the thick of the battle for a top-four finish.

Chelsea's first home game of the season hands them a London derby against Tottenham, with both on a high following their opening victories against Everton and Southampton respectively.

On the weekend the Premier League celebrates its 30th birthday, all eyes will be on Stamford Bridge as Antonio Conte faces off against his former employers.

Both Chelsea and Spurs had busy pre-seasons, including the former being taken over by Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital, and with both playing in the Champions League this season, will be among the favourites to secure their spots in Europe's elite competition once again.

Securing points against rivals in the battle may well be decisive come May, and Chelsea know they have the historic edge.

Spurs' Stamford Bridge struggles

In 2018, Spurs won consecutive Premier League matches against Chelsea – a rare phenomenon for the north London side, who are historically poor in their trips across the capital to Stamford Bridge.

Since losing 3-1 at Wembley in November 2018, Chelsea have returned to form in the fixture, with seven Premier League matches unbeaten against Spurs, six wins and one draw.

During that run, Chelsea have conceded just a solitary goal and not even that was scored by a Spurs player, with Antonio Rudiger netting an own goal in Chelsea's 2-1 win in February 2020.

Spurs' record at Stamford Bridge makes for even worse reading. Their 3-1 win in April 2018 is their only success in their last 37 visits to Chelsea, suffering 24 defeats and sharing the spoils on 12 occasions.

 

Kane's killing edge

Thierry Henry stands as the highest Premier League scorer in London derbies with 43, but Harry Kane (41) is now closing in on the former Arsenal captain.

The England skipper is a reliable threat in front of goal against opponents from the capital but has a poor run of form against Chelsea, having failed to score in any of his last five appearances against the Blues.

In the top-flight, Kane has only had longer goalless runs against Manchester City (seven games between 2017 and 2021) and Manchester United (six games between 2014 and 2016).

Kane comes into Sunday's clash seeking to open his account for the season but will have fond memories of his last London derby, where he struck twice in a convincing win over Arsenal in May.

 

Centurions in wait

Tottenham sit just one victory away from celebrating 100 wins in Premier League London derby matches and, if they beat Chelsea, will become the third side to reach that milestone after the Blues and Arsenal.

Securing a win at Stamford Bridge is difficult enough but Spurs are also edging towards being centurions in Premier League London derbies at the opposite end of the spectrum as they have 97 defeats – only West Ham (112) having more.

Both milestones could be reached during the course of the 2022-23 season, and Spurs will hope to tick off the former first.

 

Home headache

Two of Chelsea's last three home Premier League London derby matches have ended in defeat, having lost to Arsenal and Brentford in April.

In that run, Chelsea suffered as many defeats in three games as they had in their previous 17 – where they had only dropped 12 points from a possible 51.

Those losses to Arsenal and Brentford hit harder, however, with the fact that Thomas Tuchel's side conceded eight goals in total – as many as they had conceded in their previous 16 combined.

Spurs can pack a punch too, with Conte's men winning their last four Premier League matches with an aggregate scoreline of 13-1, which stands as the longest winning run within the top-flight.

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