The biggest English Premier League game of the weekend is undoubtedly the Chelsea vs Manchester City matchup at Stamford Bridge in London on Sunday, November 25th. Chelsea will be hoping their home-field advantage can see them earn all three points against the league leaders. Both teams are coming off of disappointing Champions League matches during the week. Man City was held to a 1-1 home draw against Real Madrid and was knocked out of the competition at the group stage. Chelsea took a trip to Turin and were beaten 3-0 by Italian champions Juventus.
Sportsbook William Hill shows the latest odds on the match to be 6/4 for a Chelsea win with a Manchester City victory at 13/8 and a draw at 23/10.
The Chelsea loss was a huge turning point in their season as 42-year-old manager Roberto Di Matteo was sacked after the game and replaced with 52-year-old Rafael Benitez, former manager of Liverpool. Di Matteo took over from the ousted Andre Villas-Boas last season and took Chelsea to an FA Cup victory and then to the Champions League trophy. He was hired fulltime in June, but owner Roman Abramovich was unhappy with the team’s results over the last month.
City hasn’t lost a game in the league yet and sits in first place with 28 points from eight wins and four draws. They’re the reigning champions of the Premier League and at the moment look to be a good bet to retain the title. Chelsea is in third place in the table, with Manchester United in second, but they’re just four points back of City. They have seven wins, three draws and two losses in league play. A win against City here would put them right back in the middle of the title race. They’ve only managed to earn two points in their last four league matches though and lost 2-1 at West Brom last weekend while City was demolishing Aston Villa 5-0.
In their last 10 meetings, Chelsea has won six games against City while the Manchester club has won the other four. They last met in the Community Shield in august and City won 3-2 after Chelsea had a man sent off. City has scored 25 league goals this season with Chelsea right behind them at 24. City’s defence is the best in the league with just 10 goals against while Chelsea has let in 13.
City manager Roberto Mancini has a lot of attacking power and he’s got four world class strikers to choose from in Carlos Tevez, Sergio Agüero, Mario Balotelli, and Edin Dzeko. He also has attack-minded players in David Silva and Samir Nasri. Chelsea depends on striker Fernando Torres, but he’s been a huge letdown since joining the club a couple of years ago from Liverpool. Fans are hoping that he plays better under Benitez, his former boss with the Reds.
Chelsea will have to play without skipper John Terry as he’s injured and it looks like English international midfielder Frank Lampard will also miss the game. For City, they will also be without their captain as Vincent Kompany will likely miss the contest after being injured against Madrid. Defenders Micah Richards and Joleon Lescott are also questionable.
Predictions for Chelsea vs Man City
It’ll be interesting to see how Chelsea players and supporters react to Benitez. They will either come out flying or as flat as a pancake in this match. Either way, it’s going to be a tough game and City should take it in a close affair.