Two Giants Collide: Previewing Chelsea vs. Manchester United

Who: Chelsea (46 points, 3rd in EPL entering Saturday) vs. Manchester United (37 points, 7th in EPL entering Saturday)

Hey look! I don't have to credit anyone because I took this!  But it looks a little off so....there's that...

Hey look! I don’t have to credit anyone because I took this!
But it looks a little off so….there’s that…

Where: Stamford Bridge. Chelsea are 9-1-0 with a +14 goal differential at home this season, while Manchester United are 6-2-2 with a +7 goal differential on the road.

When: Sunday at 11 AM ET/8 AM PT

white-le-saux

TV: NBCSN, with Arlo White & former Chelsea Left Back Graeme Le Saux on the call.

Current Form (Last Six Matches, chronological order):
– Chelsea: W-D-W-W-W-W (+8 goal differential)
– Manchester United: W-W-W-W-L-W (+8 goal differential)

Last Premier League Result:

Mourinho celebrates in win over Hull City
– Chelsea: 2-0 win away to Hull City, goals from Eden Hazard (56′) and Fernando Torres (87′)
– Manchester United: 2-0 win at home against Swansea City, goals from Antonio Valencia (47′) and Danny Welbeck (59′)

Injury Report:
– Chelsea: Branislav Ivanovic and Marco Van Ginkel are both out with knee injuries. Frank Lampard will make his return after being out since December 29 with a “muscle injury.”
– Manchester United: Out for United are Wayne Rooney (groin), Robin Van Persie (thigh), Marouane Fellani (wrist), Nani (hamstring) and Ashley Young (shoulder). Fabio is suspended for Sunday’s match.

Recent Series History:
– The last 10 meetings have seen a split as each side has won four matches and two have finished level. Chelsea are 2-1-1 in the last four matches at Stamford Bridge. However the last contest between these two sides at Stamford Bridge – played last season on Sunday, October 28, 2012 – finished in a 3-2 win for United as a David Luiz own goal in the fourth minute and a RVP finish in the 12th put MUFC up 2-0, goals by Juan Mata (44′) and Ramires (53′) gave leveled the match, and Chicharito had the deciding score in the 75th minute.
– United and Chelsea did meet earlier this season on August 26th, a match that finished a 0-0 draw in front of 75,032 at Old Trafford.

What (Else) You Need to Know:

Adnan Januzaj celebration

– When searching for bright spots for United this season – though it may be tough – one need not look further than Adnan Januzaj. The 18 year old Belgian midfielder has proven his worth so far and shown an ability to play seemingly anywhere in the midfield, allowing David Moyes considerable flexibility. His three goals and two assists finds him fourth among MUFC players in points, behind only Rooney, Van Persie and Welbeck.
For more on Adnan Januzaj’s performance this season, visit WorldSoccerTalk.com 

– Make no mistake, the injured list for United could be a big factor in this one as the Red Devils are without their star goal scorers.

– With a win, Chelsea may be able to go top of the table as the continual back-and-forth atop the Premier League standings will continue this weekend.

David Moyes

– United had lost three straight across all competitions – adding fuel to the fire underneath David Moyes’ seat – prior to their 2-0 win at Swansea City.

– Eden Hazard has experienced a torrid run of late with goals in each of Chelsea’s last four Premier League matches, bringing his total for the season to nine and adding five assists as well. His nine goals have him tied with Wayne Rooney and three others for 6th in the Golden Boot race. Mourinho is currently so pleased with Hazard’s performance that he has said he would rebuke offers as high as B£100million.

– As we said before, though they did defeat the Swans their last time out there is still significant pressure on David Moyes and his staff to get victories, but this will be no easy task and a loss certainly will not help his cause.

Predictions:
Dylan – Chelsea win 3-1 with two goals from Hazard and one from Oscar.
Joe – Chelsea wins 2-0 with goals from Torres and Hazard

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About Dylan Jenkins

I'm a proud Seattlite currently living in Queens, NY. Outside of sports, I enjoy crime dramas - specifically police procedurals - as well as a wide range of music, everything from Top 40 to Iron & Wine, Bob Dylan & Rogue Wave. I am a cat person, which is to say I'm a human who enjoys felines. I have a tremendous sweet tooth that isn't very discerning, and I refuse to observe a number of unwritten social rules.
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