Premier League - Manchester City vs Chelsea

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 2:40 am

Premier League - Manchester City vs Chelsea Tumblr_nb8cawPJEb1ruhh4yo1_1280
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Chelsea will travel to Manchester for Premier League Matchday 5 to take on League
champions Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, September 21st
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Premier League - Manchester City vs Chelsea Tumblr_n0qffxpSaH1ruhh4yo1_1280





Premier League Matchday 5 will see the eyes of the nation turn to the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, where the League's two undisputed title favourites will go head to head in a clash undeniably pivotal to each respecting accomplishment of that goal.
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Both go into this match in slightly contrasting forms. The Mancunian Blues have won just 2 of their opening 4 Premier League games this season, with a draw against Arsenal at the Emirates the matchweek previous and a shock home defeat to Stoke City before the International break leaving Manuel Pellegrini's men 5 points adrift of their weekend opponents barely a month into the new campaign. Chelsea, conversely, are undeniably soaring. 4 wins from 4 in their own opening 4 matches have fired José Mourinho's men to the top of the early table, with a phenomenal 7 goals from Diego Costa and exceptional 6 assists from Cesc Fàbregas providing the icing on the proverbial cake.





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The corresponding fixture last season saw the visitors run out slightly surprising 1-0 winners in a game they knew only too well they needed to win. The hosts started out irrefutably the better side, passing rings around the slightly disjointed Blues and missing several golden chances to obtain an early lead. That initial domination, however, gave way to a prompt contrast in fortunes, when the guests, having finally settled into the game and found their feet in it themselves, started to take control.  Several chances of their own spurned angered manager and players alike, knowing that in as unforgiving a venue as the Etihad, such failures to capitalise when opportunities were presented or procured could well come back to haunt one, but their frustration was allayed when on just over half an hour, a Ramires shot at goal inside the 6-yard box headed desperately away by Citizens centre-half and captain Vincent Kompany found its way to a lurking Branislav Ivanovic on the edge of the box, who fired low and from range and found the bottom of the corner meticulously. The Blues had several additional chances from then on to add to their advantage, but again lacked the decisiveness to do so. A late rally from the hosts game the home crowd some hope for the closing 10 minutes of the affair, but the scoreline held, and José Mourinho's double over his rival and Real Madrid predecessor was complete, handing the Argentine with his and City's first home League defeat of the season, and their first shutout at home since November of 2010.





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Premier League - Manchester City vs Chelsea Shelvey-vs-Chelsea-5415b95e5c9c3
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As alluded to previously, the sides obtained differing results the weekend before in ther Matchday 4 fixtures. Manchester City's game at the Emirates against Arsenal ended a 2-2 draw with goals from Sergio Agüero, Jack Wilshere, Alexis Sánchez, and Martín Demichelis making up the numbers, while the Blues negotiated a 4-2 rout of Swansea City, courtesy of a hattrick from on-fire Spaniard Diego Costa, and a debut goal from late signing Loïc Rémy, offset by a John Terry own goal to open up the scoring on the day and a nicely-taken consolation from Jonjo Shelvey a few minutes from time.
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Not unlike a few weeks previous against Everton, the reigning Premier League champions have, at least for the last number of years, been firmly one of the Blues' most challenging opponents, especially when the latter is on the road. The Londoners have won only 1 of their last 5 away League games against the Sky Blues since their Double-winning campaign of 2010, and just 4 of their last 10 overall. Nevertheless, a League double over the Mancunians last year will give the Blues undeniable bullishness going into the weekend's clash, and that confidence will only be strengthened by the fact that the northerners have been decidedly far from at their best this term as yet.
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Premier League - Manchester City vs Chelsea Tumblr_nc01yqWUTJ1ruhh4yo1_1280




The Blues also go into Sunday's affair knowing that a win can put considerable daylight between themselves and their hosts. Indeed, a victory would see them 8 points clear of Manuel Pellegrini's men, with the away head-to-head already out of the way.

The season is undeniably still very much in its infancy, and much can, and indeed will, change over its course, but such an advantage so early on would doubtless be welcomed emphatically by Blues boss José Mourinho, and would furnish his side with a bit of breathing space as the grueling season starts to settle in.




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Nevertheless, the Portuguese, true to form, is calling for calm heads, stressing that early advantages mean precious little in the larger context of things, and that picking up points week-to-week is the most important objective in these early days, telling chelseafc.com:

"[Manchester City and Arsenal's dropped points the weekend previous] has no consequence, no context. In this moment you just play, you can’t go to mathematics now. Mathematics is for 10 matches to go. At the moment it’s about playing and trying to get the maximum possible points."
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Mike Dean, who officiated in this same fixture last season, has been
appointed referee for Sunday's match.
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Injured for the hosts are striker Stevan Jovetić and midfielder and new summer
recruit Fernando, while Chelsea again have a full squad to pick from.
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The match kicks off at 1600 BST




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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 2:52 am

I'll be happy as long as we don't lose here.

I've been saying it all week but here is the team I want to see:
Courtois
Ivanovic Cahill Terry Azpilicueta
Fabregas Matic Ramires/Oscar
Willian Costa Hazard

Play it tight and look for goals on the counter attack. Ramires is in good form presently so I am almost tempted to play him, Oscar over Fabregas is also possible due to Fabregas' tendency to get caught in possession.

Will be a cracking match regardless. Cannot wait.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 2:54 am

Should be an intriguing match on both ends. A draw is good enough and José will know that.

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 2:57 am

Very much so.

I think we'll play for a 1 0 win and be happy to keep a clean sheet.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:01 am

Despite their last-minute loss, I understand they performed quite well against Bayern today.


Also rested Aguero save for the last 15 or so minutes.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:12 am

Alternatively, I heard Yaya was absolute cack. Again.

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:13 am

I think Matic can handle him again. Get Ramires to help out when needed and we'll be fine against him.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:16 am

Also have high hopes for a big game from Costa (Captain Obvious, I know). Was more of a threat in the 15 minutes he was on this evening than Drogba was in the entire game.

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:18 am

Yes, I think that'll very much help, if we can get Willian and Hazard near him, the three can cause damage.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:24 am

Thinking about all those missed sitters we had there last year. If we could carve out a few more of those (easier said than done, mind) I think Diegod could be in for a very good afternoon indeed Twisted Evil

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:26 am

My only concern is Fabregas.

If we can manage to protect him so he is covered, I think we'll be fine, but we have to work out how to do that.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:30 am

Think there's any chance of him being left out at the start?


Can't see it myself.

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:32 am

I am not sure, honestly.

If we play for the draw, he could well be.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:33 am

hmm

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:36 am

Courtois
Ivanovic Cahill Terry Azpilicueta
Ramires Matic
Willian Oscar Hazard
Costa

Sure you lose Cesc's passes, but we'll have Costa to tuck away chances and have almost the same team that stopped most teams from scoring last season.

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:38 am

I wouldn't be opposed.


Though at the end of the day, I trust the manager to do what will give us the best chance at a good result, especially in a game like this which is José's forte.

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Post by Kick on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:39 am

Yes, completely agree.

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Post by Soul on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:41 am

Great preview Shed Thumbs up

Hoping for a good match!

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Post by Shed on Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:42 am

Cheers.


Likewise Thumbs up

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Post by Shed on Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:00 am

“He belongs to us”: Sentimental Didier Drogba looking forward to reunion against old teammate Frank Lampard on Sunday and says the Blues legend should expect a good reception from Chelsea fans in the away end:
Chelsea striker Didier Drogba says he's eager to see old Blues colleague Frank Lampard again when the Londoners take on Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, and believes the travelling Chelsea fans will give the club's all-time highest goalscorer the reception he deserves
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/chelsea/11107132/Chelsea-legend-Didier-Drogba-happy-to-help-Eden-Hazard-follow-him-on-the-road-to-greatness.html

"I can’t wait to see him, to see my partner in crime. It’s a pity that I’ve come back and he’s not here anymore. But I know for sure I will be happy to see him again. I will be in touch, I will not text him but I will see him."

"The fans know what he gave for the club. They know what he did. So I know, for sure, the reaction will be good. I know that. It doesn’t matter what team he is playing for now. He belongs to us."

"He is a Chelsea player. For what he did. He made the crowd shout and cheer, his name and for us, a lot of times here. For me, he’s part of the history of this club."

"I played against Chelsea last year, so I know it’s going to be difficult. But I know Frank and he will do his best."

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Post by Shed on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:37 am

Manchester City ready to take Champions League pain out on Chelsea, says Fernandinho:
Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho has ordered the reigning Premier League champions to take out their Champions League disappointment on title-rivals Chelsea
http://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/400509/Man-City-ready-to-take-Champions-League-pain-out-on-Chelsea-says-Fernandinho

"When you lose a game like this at the end, after the game you feel a little bit sad."

"But you have to recover as soon as you can and now we have a great game against a big team like Chelsea."

"The best way to recover is to win that game."
"Chelsea have started very well. Their new players have shown their quality."

"But we have a good team as well and are playing at home in front of our own supporters."

"In the Premier League the most important thing is not to give the team at the top of the table reasons to keep winning game after game."

"We don't want a big space between us. We have to win because there are five points difference between us and Chelsea. We have to shorten it."

"Against Chelsea we have to win, to keep working and keep going until we are top of the table."

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Post by Kick on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:44 am

Didn't realise Man City had supporters Shocked

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Post by Shed on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:46 am

Yep. You'll usually find one in every other seat in the Etihad on home matchdays.

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Post by Kick on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:49 am

Honestly though, their home support is laughable at times.

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Post by Shed on Fri Sep 19, 2014 5:03 am

It is.


Almost as bad as Arsenal's. Minus the cow-like chorus of boooooooooo every time something moves or someone breathes.

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