Chelsea are facing a major problem heading into the business end of the season as the aftermath of interim manager Rafael Benitez’s outburst continues to settle.
The Blues boss lit up the headlines in the Premier League betting news by letting his feelings be known after Chelsea’s 2-0 win at Middlesbrough in the FA Cup last midweek and although he insisted he was happy with the crowd reception inside Stamford Bridge last Saturday is still at loggerheads with supporters.
Clearly the Spaniard is set to leave at the end of the season but still has a job to do at Chelsea. Into the FA Cup quarter-finals and still in with a chance of claiming the UEFA Europa League, Chelsea have honours to fight for and Benitez will want to prove his worth to future employers.
So, if you're looking to bet on football with bet365, it's worth asking: how far can Chelsea go this season? Currently fourth in the league, they have little chance of catching the careering Tottenham and instead should focus on keeping Arsenal at bay.
Champions League qualification is the minimum owner Roman Abramovich will expect from this team and Chelsea, with three relatively easy Premier League ties coming up, should have enough to cement their position.
Their upcoming FA Cup clash with Manchester United may be just out of reach for Benitez’s men, with United out of Europe themselves and no doubt desperate to reclaim a trophy last won in 2004.
This leaves Europe, and on Thursday night Chelsea play away to Steaua Bucharest in the Europa League last-16. The Blues should easily bypass this challenge and any team thrown up in the quarters, while last season’s exploits in Barcelona must put them in confident mood against any semi-final opponent.
With Benitez having proven himself at European level before now and with little to play for in England, he may just go all out to claim that trophy. There is light at the end of this dark 2012/13 tunnel for Blues fans and Benitez probably wants silverware just as much as you do.