Chelsea v Manchester City

Kevin de Bruyne celebrates scoring for Manchester City at Chelsea last season
Kevin de Bruyne earned Manchester City a 1-0 win at Chelsea last season – but he will miss Saturday’s game through injury

TEAM NEWS

Chelsea pair Jorginho and David Luiz were unused substitutes for the midweek defeat by Wolves and are expected to be recalled on Saturday.

Ross Barkley is back in contention after an ankle injury.

Manchester City’s record scorer Sergio Aguero will miss a third successive game because of muscle tightness.

Oleksandr Zinchenko is also a doubt due to a facial injury, while the match comes too soon for playmaker Kevin De Bruyne.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri: “I knew very well that sooner or later we have to face difficulties. When you change the way of playing, the way of football, you need to change the mentality.

“You need to change the mentality in 25 minds, so it’s not a short way. It’s very difficult.

“We have a problem to manage the match at the moment. In the last two matches we played well for 55, 60 minutes, then the first difficulty we went in blackout. We didn’t react as a team, but as 11 players – in 11 different ways. So it’s a big problem.”

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola: “Tomorrow is another huge demanding test for us. How will they react after losing? I can imagine how intense, committed they will be.

“I have been to Stamford Bridge many times and I have won once, last season; always I lose there. They are a good side, a really good team. When you see the XI and the people on the bench, they are a real contender.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

It is going to be interesting to see how close Chelsea get to City, and whether they can make life difficult for the champions at all. I really do have my doubts.

Prediction: 0-2

Lawro’s full predictions v world champion boxer Josh Warrington

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Manchester City have won the last three meetings in all competitions, including this season’s Community Shield, without conceding a goal.
  • This will be the 161st meeting of the sides in all competitions. City can win four consecutive games against Chelsea for the first time.
  • Chelsea have lost only four of their 21 Premier League home matches against Manchester City, but two of those defeats have come in the last three seasons.

Chelsea

  • Chelsea began this Premier League campaign with five consecutive victories, but they have won only four of their subsequent 10 fixtures.
  • The Blues are unbeaten in all eight home league fixtures this season but have drawn three of the past five.
  • They have not lost a Premier League home game against the reigning champions in 11 attempts since being defeated by Manchester United in 2002 (W5, D6).
  • A team managed by Maurizio Sarri has not lost consecutive league matches since October 2016, when Napoli were beaten by Atalanta and Roma.
  • Eden Hazard has failed to score in his last 11 appearances for club and country.

Manchester City

  • Manchester City are unbeaten in 21 league games since April, winning the last seven.
  • They are unbeaten in their last 14 away league matches (W11, D3) – they have never gone 15 without defeat in the top flight.
  • Since the beginning of last season, Pep Guardiola’s side have earned 34 points out of a possible 42 against the other established top-six teams. Chelsea have only managed half as many points.
  • They could become the first club based outside London to win seven consecutive top-flight fixtures in the capital. They have equalled the record of six in a row, set by Portsmouth from December 1950 to December 1951.
  • Raheem Sterling, who turns 24 on the day of the game, has failed to score and provided only one assist in nine league appearances against Chelsea.

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