Big big game!
Chelsea take on Manchester City on Thursday night in what is a big game for both teams. Chelsea are looking to catch up to Leicester who dropped points while depending on results elsewhere we could increase the gap from 5th. Manchester City don’t really have much to fight for as they sit 20 points behind Liverpool although a loss to Chelsea would hand Liverpool the title while a win for Manchester City would keep the title at bay for a little longer. City have played two games since the lockdown ended as they beat Arsenal 3-0 and beat Burnley 5-0. City have returned to football in streaking fashion and the break seems to have done them a world of good as they rotated 8 players for the Burnley game and still managed to put 5 past the away team. For Chelsea the main factor is the top four race and nothing else and its going to be a tough game for sure.
Lampard was asked some interesting questions at the press conference in terms of transfers and City. Firstly Lampard was asked about Pedro and Willian and their extensions for which he said that it was great that the two would be sticking around for the remainder of the season. Their availability does allow for more depth so it is welcome news. Lampard was then asked about transfers and if Chelsea were still in the market to which he replied that if and when something comes up Chelsea will make a decision. Havertz also came up and whether a bid was made and the answer was that while Havertz was a good player no bid had been made. Lampard then went on to comment on how he was focused on Chelsea’s situation and not what was happening around the table in terms of points and the title. To him top four is the priority and his attention is nailed on it.
Chelsea Team Preview
Chelsea’s squad situation is the same as Aston Villa with Tomori still a week out while Hudson-Odoi is still not match fit. Jorginho is available again although whether he starts will be interesting to see. Kepa will start in goal, I think Azpilicueta will switch to left back with Reece James starting at right back. Zouma, and Christensen could start in the middle although I could see Rudiger start in place of one of the two. I though Christensen’s passing was great and Zouma would be a good addition. Jorginho could be back in the midfield with Kante and Kovacic up front. I think Mount, and Pulisic will be on the wings while Tammy could start up front. There is plenty of depth and so the lineup is really based on preference in terms of the game.
Manchester City Preview
City have Aguero out with a long term injury but most of the other players should be available. Having made 8 changes for the Burnley game the likes of De Bruyne, Sterling, Jesus, Laporte etc should all be rested and raring to go. City have their way of playing and so there is no point in analysing what could happen. They have their way Pep has his way and they look really good at the moment.
Starting XI Prediction
The reverse fixture was a narrow 2-1 loss on a day when Chelsea played really well but failed to take their chances while City were lethal. There have been many times in recent years where we have played City and against the odds we have come away with 3 points. I have a feeling Chelsea will take up the challenge and win this game but will be a difficult one for sure. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!