Tussle At The Top

Image courtesy of eurosport.com
Cesc Fabregas could miss Sunday's match through injury. Image courtesy of eurosport.com

Chelsea EPL Logo


Chelsea v Manchester City


Stamford Bridge, London

Sunday February 1 – 3:30am (AEST)

Form:


WDLWW

WDWDL


Manchester City EPL Logo


 

This weekend’s top-of-the-table clash between Chelsea and Manchester City could prove to be the title decider.

The Blues enter Sunday (AEST) morning’s match sitting atop of the EPL table with a healthy lead over last season’s champions Manchester City. Three points over the Sky Blues this weekend would see Jose Mourinho’s men stretch their lead to eight points, a gap many would deem uncatchable given the incredible form they’re in. Chelsea remain unbeaten at home this season, with an astonishing 10 wins from 10 matches played at Stamford Bridge. City pose as their biggest challenge yet, however, and the Blues will be without star striker Diego Costa after the Spaniard was given a three-match ban for violent conduct. Playmaker Cesc Fabregas is also in doubt with a hamstring injury, along with resilient defender Branislav Ivanovic.

After closing the deficit between themselves and Chelsea over the New Year period, the Sky Blues have dropped off the pace again. A draw at Everton was compounded by a loss at home to Arsenal, and if that wasn’t bad enough for City fans, they saw their team crash out of the FA Cup last weekend to Championship side Middlesbrough. New signing Wilfried Bony remains on international duty with the Ivory Coast at the African Cup of Nations, so Sergio Aguero will pair with either Edin Dzeko or Stevan Jovetic up front. French midfielder Samir Nasri is a big blow as he continues to recover from a calf injury, and his absence is likely to promote former Chelsea great Frank Lampard to the starting XI. The Blues legend equalised late for City when these sides met earlier in the season, and he has the ability to come back and haunt his former club again.   

Chelsea are the even money favourites heading into the blockbuster, but it’s tough to predict who will come out trumps. Both sides’ starting XI are far from full strength, making it a real head-scratcher for punters.

 

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