Gameweek 11 Match 8: Chelsea vs. Manchester United

Preview:

What a big game this one is. 2 of the best Premier League sides coming head-to-head in this fixture for what should be a great game. Manchester United are in 2nd place while Chelsea sit in 4th so these teams are very close in the standings making a win even more crucial here. Man. United have been better than Chelsea this season and are 4 points ahead of them at the moment but both teams have been inconsistent against teams in the bottom-half of the table. Man. United have been good against top teams but they often play very defensively and quite boring when they come up against stronger sides in the league. Chelsea have played 3 top sides this season and they’ve picked up a win, a draw and a loss in those matches which isn’t a bad record against very strong sides.

Reigning champions Chelsea have been nowhere near as good as they were last season when they won the title and played incredibly. They’ve been inconsistent so far and they need to improve some of their performances against weaker sides. There isn’t an obvious problem with this team but everyone on the team has just been slightly under performing meaning the overall team hasn’t been great. Chelsea have scored 18 and conceded 10 which isn’t bad at the beginning of the season but it can definitely be improved with the quality of players that they have.

A key player for Chelsea in this match will be Alvaro Morata. Former Real Madrid man has started the season well at his new club with 6 goals and 3 assists this season. He’s been crucial to them so far because his finishing is top class and his headers have been incredible. Fellow Spaniard Cesar Azpilicueta Has helped Morata a lot with his great long balls into the striker. Azpilicueta has 4 assists this season and most of them have been off brilliant deep balls to Morata for him to head the ball home.

The defensive side of Chelsea has to be good in this match because Man. United have some great attacking players in Lukaku, Martial and Rashford all doing well this season. Key players in their defence will be David Luiz and again, Azpilicueta. These are Chelsea’s 2 strongest centre-backs in their 3 at the back formation but they both like to attack which can sometimes leave their back line exposed. If these players do end up supporting the attack in this game wing-backs Alonso and Zappacosta will need to drop back a bit to help out.

Man. United have been great this season especially at the back. United often play very defensively minded especially against good teams and they count on scoring off counter-attacks. This worked out for them in their last game when they played Tottenham and scored a late counter-attack goal with Martial finishing the move. Man. United have been wonderful at the back and they’ve only conceded 4 goals in the 10 matches this season. If this continues they will be an incredible side just because of how challenging it will be to break down their defence.

Romelu Lukaku will be important this match because he’s always in the right place at the right time to finish something off for United. He never scores the greatest of goals but his tap-ins and easy finishes have been crucial to the success of United this season. He’s scored 7 times already this season and has been United’s main man up front always getting into attacking positions.

The defensive success for United has been largely related to the fact the De Gea has been absolutely incredible this season. He’s made 25 saves in the 10 matches they’ve played averaging 2.5 saves which isn’t bad at all. Phil Jones and Eric Bailly have also been good at the back for United and haven’t made many defensive errors. The defence has been so solid and anything that comes near the box is immediately gotten rid of. These 3 players are the main reason that Man. United have kept 8 clean sheets this season and have only been scored on in 2 of their games.

Prediction:

I think this will be a low-scoring game because of Mourinho’s tactics against strong sides and how defensively he likes to play. I don’t think that Chelsea will be shut out completely in this match unlike teams like Liverpool and Tottenham were. This is because they have so many good attacking players and their defenders love supporting their attacking play. I don’t think United will lose this because of their form against top teams but I do think they’ll tie. The score will be 1-1.