Competition: Premier League – Manchester City vs. Chelsea
Venue: Etihad Stadium – Sunday, August 16 – 16.00 BST (11.00 ET)
Match Odds: Manchester City 11/10 – Draw 12/5 – Chelsea 12/5
Manchester City vs Chelsea. It’s a crucial fixture as Sunday afternoon will see Manuel Pellegrini’s men host defending champions Chelsea in a match which pits two of the heavy favourites to win the Premier League against each other in the first major clash of the 2015-16 campaign.
The Manchester side come into this game off the back of a convincing and dominant display away at the Hawthorns against West Brom on Monday, winning 3-0. Not only was it just a convincing victory but Yaya Toure returned to form netting two goals and looking back to his best, with David Silva also instrumental.
Man City have scored eight goals in their last two home games in the Premier League, which shows how clinical they are in front of their home crowd and that will be a concern for Chelsea.
City have also won their last seven Premier league games, with four of these victories coming at home.
Chelsea have only suffered one defeat in their last 19 Premier League games, which just shows you how resilient they are.
They have taken four points out of a possible 6 in their last two visits to the Etihad and will travel north looking to remain tight and avoid defeat.
Chelsea tend to adopt a different approach when it comes to the bigger games. Their negative approach tends to be scrutinised, however it has proved effective in recent years.P
A City win here would see them move five points clear of Chelsea at the top of the league after just two weeks, and that would be a huge advantage that Jose Mourinho will be desperate to avoid giving his title rivals.
Manchester City are without Fabian Delph and Fernando through injury. Yaya Toure is a minor doubt but is expected to start. Gael Clichy is also a doubt and Sergio Aguero has a lack of match fitness so will most likely will feature from the bench again.
Chelsea midfielder Oscar has a knock and is a doubt for Sunday’s trip. Thibaut Courtois is suspended after his red card against Swansea so Asmir Begovic will start in goal. Diego Costa will lead the attack with Willian and Eden Hazard set to continue out wide.
Manchester City’s form: W
Chelsea’s form: D
Key Stat: Manchester City have failed to beat Chelsea in Premier League since February 2013.
Key Player: Eden Hazard – The current PFA Player of the Year is one of the best players in the world at the moment and if he can continue to produce the level of performances that he did last season it’s easy to see him causing Man City a massive problem come Sunday. His lightning quick pace and agility to match can hurt any side and don’t be surprised to see the young Belgian create several opportunities and perhaps even get on the scoresheet.
Manchester City 1-2 Chelsea – We can see this game being won in a very tight affair where Chelsea should show their defensive resilience and catch Man City on the counter, We can’t see either team keeping the other out and so both teams scoring is likely. Chelsea have the advantage of being champions and ill be favourites for a win.