Chelsea have not enjoyed facing up against Manchester City, who have beaten them three times in-a-row, but Carlo Ancelotti will hope to change that today at Stamford Bridge today and bump his side up into third place ahead of the Citizens.
Alex could make a long-awaited return from injury. Yossi Benayoun is still out of action, but is also expected to return soon. Apart from that, Ancelotti has a full compliment to choose from, including David Luiz, who was ineligible to play in the Champions League game against Copenhagen on Wednesday.
City manager Roberto Mancini may drop Mario Balotelli following his ‘stupid’ challenge which earned him a red card in Thursday’s Europa League clash. Shay Given is still out with injury, Kolo Toure is suspended and Pablo Zabaleta is on compassionate leave.
This is a hard game to call on form as the Blues have not won back-to-back Premier League games at home since November, and City have not won back-to-back league games in 2011 and are yet to record a victory on the road since Boxing Day.
Carlos Tevez is the danger man for City today, and for good reason as the Argentinean has scored 6 goals in his last five league games against Chelsea. He is 13/2 to score the first/last goal today and priced 2/1 to score at anytime by bet365.
The Fernando Torres witch-hunt is getting tiresome to say the least, but the Chelsea faithful will hope that the birthday boy finally opens his goal-scoring account at the club today (15/4 first/last goal & 11/10 anytime) and help allay some of the fears that have arisen following continuous media criticism of the Blues’ £50m man.
But Frank Lampard, who has been finding the net lately, could be a decent bet, especially if Chelsea are awarded a penalty today. The Blues and City have been awarded a joint-high amount of penalties in the league this season with eight each.
Manchester City will probably turn up today and try to bore us to death, so this one could have goalless draw (9/1) written all over it. But I’m hoping for some revenge after the defeat last season and as there’s no Henrique Hilarious between the sticks for us this time, I’m going to opt for us to take all three points with a 1-0 win (5/1).