Prediction Time: Paul Merson states his prediction for Chelsea vs Bournemouth

Paul Merson is backing Chelsea FC to keep their Premier League bid on track by beating Bournemouth 3-1 at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night.

The Blues head into the game fresh from their 3-0 victory over Newcastle United in the FA Cup on Sunday as they booked their place in the fifth round.

The west London side have struggled to find consistent form in recent weeks and they were dumped out of the League Cup in the semi-finals by Arsenal last week.

Chelsea FC are currently in third place in the Premier League table as they chase Champions League qualification in Antonio Conte’s second season in charge at Stamford Bridge.

And Merson is not expecting the Blues to have any trouble when they host Eddie Howe’s men at Stamford Bridge this week.

Writing in his column for Sky Sports, Merson said: “There’s a lot of talk about Chelsea at the moment but things are not that bad. They’ve lost just one game out the last 16 in the league but they are getting pelters from all sides at the moment.

“It’s only because Manchester City are doing so well that there’s so much scrutiny on Chelsea. Antonio Conte’s side would have a good season if it wasn’t for what was going on at the Etihad. City have made all the other teams’ seasons look pretty average really.

“However, I expect them to win this against a Bournemouth side in a relegation battle and lacking in confidence. Eddie Howe’s side do have a go away from home but it won’t help them here.”

Chelsea FC won the Premier League title last season but it looks as though they will have to settle for just a top-four finish in the table this term.

The west London side, who have won the title in two of the last three seasons, are set to take on FC Barcelona in the last 16 of the Champions League starting from next month.

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