How do you solve a problem like Manchester City? Pep Guardiola’s side are actually better than last season when they walked to the Premier League title by a nineteen-point margin and their closest rivals last term were Manchester United who are nowhere to be seen this term.
While Liverpool and Chelsea are improved this time around, they really are hanging to the coat tails of City and the truth is that the Blues need to win this Saturday teatime encounter if they are to stay in the Premier League title race this season.
Maurizio Sarri will be plotting a victory at Stamford Bridge and bet365 have 7/2 about Chelsea claiming three points which would see them close the gap on City and give them hope that they can play a part in the title proceedings.
Chelsea Look Slightly Fresher
The London side have the advantage of no Champions League football this season and it’s generally been a weakened team who has taken to the field in the Europa League, with the players slightly fresher than their opponents although there’s little doubt as to where the money is going for this one.
Manchester City are a machine and BetVictor have 5/6 about a win for the champions of England who have recently gone 1/4 to retain their Premier League crown, with Guardiola able to effectively rotate players in his system and still achieve the desired effect.
City believe they will win every game they play and this excellent start to the campaign has been achieved without Kevin de Bruyne, while Benjamin Mendy’s operation also robs the team of an attacking threat from the left-back position.
City will have enjoyed an extra day’s rest after their match at Watford and they tend to run a tight ship away from home, having won this fixture 1-0 last season and effectively nullified Chelsea in front of their own supporters.
Visitors to Win to Nil Looks Interesting
BetVictor offer an interesting 27/10 about the visitors winning without conceding and it’s clear that Guardiola will field his strongest possible team for this clash despite the busy run of fixtures on the horizon during the festive period.
The beauty is that City don’t need to get anything from their remaining Champions League group game against Hoffenheim, with John Stones and Aymeric Laporte expected to line up in central defence, while it would be a surprise if David Silva and Bernardo Silva weren’t in the middle of the park.
Manchester City won 1-0 at Wembley Stadium against Tottenham earlier in the season and it wouldn’t be a surprise if they edged out Chelsea by the same scoreline, with bet365 offering 9/1 about a single goal winning it for the visitors against a team who will hope for some magic from Eden Hazard.
Hazard to Score?
Hazard always relishes these big occasions and Paddy Power have 7/1 about the Belgian scoring the opening goal of the game, with Marcos Alonso catching the eye at a similar price of 20/1 considering how advanced the Spaniard tends to get for his team.
However, this game could be settled by fine margins and Gabriel Jesus might continue on penalty duties if Sergio Aguero is deemed unfit for this encounter, with the Brazilian easy to back at 4/1 with Paddy Power considering the service he will get from Sterling and Sane.