Date: Saturday 25th September 2021
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Kick-off: 12:30 BST
After a successful penalty shoot-out against Villa in the EFL Cup midweek, today’s lunchtime game sees us take on Manchester City at Stamford Bridge.
City also had a win in the EFL midweek, eventually taking Wycombe Wanderers apart 6-1 at the Etihad Stadium which will have lifted them after a goalless draw against Southampton last time out in the Premier League. The current Premier League Champions have dropped points in two of their five league games so far this season, so Guardiola will be sending them out with every intent of dropping precisely none today.
For the Champions of Europe meanwhile, we are on a run of four wins in all competitions, with wins against Villa and Spurs in the Premier League, Zenit St Petersburg in the Champions League and Villa in the EFL Cup. We have also won our last three games against City, including a 1-0 victory in last season’s Champions League final.
We go into today’s game top of the pile, with City in fifth. There’s only 3 points separating us though, so a win for them would wipe those out. City tore us apart in half an hour when they came to Stamford Bridge in the Premier League in January but with us only conceding once in the league so far this season, you’d hope we don’t let them do the same again today.
They will still be sore about that final though…
Going into today’s game, Thomas Tuchel says “I have the highest respect for Pep. I am a huge admirer for the impact he had from his first day of his professional coaching – the impact at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester City. He has my biggest respect. There is no reason to ask myself if I am a better coach. I do the best I can, I am in a place I am very happy, and I am a better coach today than yesterday.
If I look at it honestly I see the last three games as three 50/50 matches. We want to fight hard to be the guys who have a better outcome. We did it several times with this team and we know how much we suffered also in these matches. If we win [Saturday] we will not be crowned as champions, and if City win they will not be champions and we will not be in depression.”
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, meanwhile, says “We prepare the game like we prepare Southampton before and the previous games, try to read what they are and what we have done in recent games against Chelsea. and Tuchel. Every game is a new challenge to improve and learn and be better. A final is completely different, the previous games like in the FA Cup was a final and was a tight game, we lost. In the Premier League it was already done, we were already nearly champions. The Champions League was a massive game. We try to learn, now it’s a new competition and we learn for these games.
It’s one more game for the Premier League. Prepare the game from the strong points we have and improve what we have to be better. The mindset we had the last days to prepare this game will be the same against PSG and Liverpool before the international break.”
For Chelsea, Christian Pulisic (ankle) and Mason Mount have both been ruled out. Mendy (hip) is expected to return.
For Manchester City, Rodri, Aymeric Laporte, John Stones, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Ilkay Gundogan all missed Tuesday’s game because of injury concerns, leaving their availability in doubt. Nathan Ake could return after being granted compassionate leave in midweek.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Mendy; Christensen, Thiago Silva, Rudiger; Azpilicueta, Kante, Jorginho, Alonso; Havertz; Lukaku, Werner
MANCHESTER CITY (Possible line-up): Ederson; Walker, Dias, Ake, Cancelo; De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Gundogan; Jesus, Torres, Grealish
Chelsea 1-3 Manchester City (3rd January 2021)
CURRENT FORM (PL)
MANCHESTER CITY: LWWWD
- Chelsea have won their last 3 against Manchester City in all competitions.
- None of the past 12 league encounters have been drawn
- Chelsea have kept 15 clean sheets in their last 24 Premier League games.
- City have failed to score in two of their five Premier League games this season
- Defeat would leave City with their lowest points tally at this stage since 2013.
BBC Sport: Chelsea 1-1 Manchester City
Sky Sports: Chelsea 1-1 Manchester City
Sportsmole: Chelsea 1-1 Manchester City