On Saturday, the in-form Manchester United will travel to Stamford Bridge to take on league leaders Chelsea. The Red Devils will be looking for scraps in case they can in the title, while the Blues will be looking to hold on and not let their lead slip up.
Predicted Lineups: Manchester United will likely continue with the exact same lineup as recent weeks, though Marcos Rojo may come in for Phil Jones after the Englishman suffered a minor injury against Manchester City. Michael Carrick will continue to operate in midfield, as will Antonio Valencia from right back.
Chelsea, meanwhile, look set to stick Kurt Zouma in holding midfield for Ramires and Filipe Luis in at left back for Cesar Azpilicueta. This way, Jose Mourinho will at least have 6 players at the back who can TRY to stop Marouane Fellaini. Diego Costa is injured, and Mourinho will be hoping Loic Remy is fit to play because Didier Drogba looked dismal against QPR.
Latest News: United has almost no injuries, as Robin Van Persie has returned at last. James Wilson is out with a knock and Jonny Evans is suspended for spitting on Papiss Cisse of Newcastle. Chelsea, meanwhile, doesn’t have any major fitness concerns besides the aforementioned Diego Costa and Loic Remy.
Tactics: As expected, we’ll be seeing a very tactical game, especially considering Louis Van Gaal and Jose Mourinho manage the clubs in battle. A key here will be whether Antonio Valencia can deal with Eden Hazard, and we’ll likely find out that answer is no. On the other side of the pitch, Marouane Fellaini will take Nemanja Matic and Kurt Zouma out of the game, which could allow Juan Mata and Ander Herrera to expose the lack of pace of John Terry and Gary Cahill. As Chelsea’s midfielders adjust, you will see Angel Di Maria coming on as part of an effort to mess up everything.
Prediction: Manchester United is in incredible form, while Chelsea is sturdy defensively. Mourinho will look to have 6 men behind the ball at all times, and Willian will definitely do a defensive job on Ashley Young and Daley Blind. Overall, Manchester United should dominate, but Eden Hazard will take advantage of Antonio Valencia’s defensive shortcomings and save the day for Chelsea, effectively winning the title. In addition, Juan Mata’s return to Stamford Bridge will be emotional, but professional. The Spaniard is in red hot form. I expect a goal of his to get Chelsea chasing, and they’ll find exactly what they want in a dramatic draw.
Prediction: Manchester United 2-2 Chelsea; Goals, Juan Mata, Wayne Rooney, Branislav Ivanovic, Eden Hazard; MOTM Hazard