7:40am Wednesday 16th January 2013
Rafa Benitez says Chelsea must be ready if Saints come to shut up shop at Stamford Bridge.
Nigel Adkins’ side have proven their versatility but rarely look to be anything other than attacking. However, Chelsea are wary after struggling at home recently.
The Blues have struck 17 times in their last five away matches, but at home have lost twice – against QPR and Swansea – and failed to score on both occasions.
“We are doing well away but at home other teams play deep and wait and there’s less space,” said Benitez, who oversaw the 5-1 FA Cup win over Saints 10 days ago.
“We are still creating chances but the main thing is to be more clinical.
“If we take our chances it will be totally different because the teams we play will be more open and we will have the space we’re looking for.
“But if that's not the case, as in the last two games, it is more difficult.
“If you have 11 players behind the ball you have to find the space and be more precise.
“We have confidence that we can do well. We scored many goals against Aston Villa (8-0, Premier League) and Nordsjaelland (6-1, Champions League).
“The last two games were more difficult because they had 11 players behind the ball and we have to find a way to overcome that.”
There is plenty on offer for both sides at Stamford Bridge.
Saints could get the points to ease further away from the drop zone while Chelsea will reduce the gap between themselves and leaders Manchester United to 11 points if they win. But Benitez is refusing to look at the table.
“I don’t like to see the table every weekend. It’s important that we keep winning games and we do that by playing well and scoring goals,” he said.
“The stats are quite good – we are scoring a lot of goals and not conceding too many. That is the balance we were looking for.
“We want three points from every game and then we'll see where we are in a few weeks.”
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