Vidi vs Chelsea 2-2 Match Report and Player Ratings article

Goals; Vidi- Ampadu O.G (32′), Nego (55′)

             Chelsea- Willian (30′), Giroud (75′)

Olivier Giroud’s wonder free kick goal was enough for Chelsea to maintain their unbeaten run in the Europa League, as they drew 2-2 away in Budapest against Vidi.

Chelsea weren’t too dominant at the start of the game, after both teams had chances to open the scoring with Vidi having chances through Nikolov and Nego to give Vidi a valuable 1-0 lead. Morata had the best early chance for Chelsea with a header from a corner which evaded Barkley and rolled into Kovacsik’s hands.

But, after a slow but positive start for both teams, Chelsea took the lead in the 30th minute when Willian’s driving run lead to a free-kick in a dangerous position. And from the resulting free-kick, Willian placed his shot on target which evaded Kovacsik in the Vidi goal to give the away side a 0-1 lead in Hungary.

However it didn’t take long for the hosts to respond, as from a corner in the 32nd minute, Juhasz flicked header was inadvertently turned into his own net by Ethan Ampadu to bring the hosts level at 1-1.

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Vidi looked the much better side as half-time approached and should have went 2-1 up when Nego’s shot after a lovely free-flowing Vidi move was well saved by Caballero.

Before half-time, Morata picked up a knee injury after an awkward landing  from his flicked chance at goal which rolled into the keepers arms, from a Callum-Hudson Odoi’s cross. Giroud replaced the Striker before half-time. Chelsea now only have 1 fit striker going into the busy Christmas period, highlighting the fact that they will need to strengthen in that area in the upcoming January transfer window…

Surprisingly the hosts started the second half better and had an early chance through Stopira which he headed over from a corner. Chelsea then went straight down the other end and Willian had 2 attempts well blocked by Vidi defenders. That End-to-End tempo carried on until the end of the game.

The hosts took a surprise lead in the 55th minute, when Milanov’s cross was met by Nego, who volleyed superbly past the helpless Caballero to give the Hungarian side a 2-1 advanatge in the final game in Group L.

After that goal, it was all Chelsea as they looked to push on an equaliser to stop their unbeaten record in the Europa League ending tonight in Hungary.

Giroud had 2 chances to get that equaliser for Chelsea, but his mistimed attempt and  bullet volley both missed the target. Pedro then had a scuffed effort in the 71st minute which rolled just wide of the Vidi goal. It looked like it wouldn’t be Chelsea’s day and that Vidi would record a famous win over the London club in Hungary.

Although in the 75th minute, Giroud’s attempt from a free kick curled and looped over the Vidi defender on his own goal line and in to the top corner to salvage Chelsea a point in Budapest.

Both teams then looked to win the game in the last few minutes, but neither team could find a winner and therefore the game ended in a 2-2 draw which would probably had satisfied both teams, as Vidi got a precious point against a big club, and Chelsea maintained their unbeaten record in Group L. However their 100% winning record in Group L ended tonight in Hungary.

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Mixed Fortunes for Chelsea youngsters tonight

Callum Hudson Odoi delivered a very promising performance tonight for the Blues in attack. However, at the opposite end of the pitch, Ampadu didn’t have a great performance tonight after he scored an own goal to level the game up for Vidi.

Chelsea now short on Striking Options

Chelsea only have two established strikers at the club – excluding those out on loan – and they could be down to one depending on the severity of Morata’s injury

Eden Hazard – who was rested for this game – started up front in Sunday’s 2-0 win over Manchester City and might be needed to reprise that same role again.

Chelsea Fringe Players fail to impress

Players like Emerson Palmieri, Ross Barkley, Davide Zappacosta, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Fabregas did little to stake a place in the first-choice line-up. Will Sarri use any of these players for the weekend? The only players that could be used by Sarri on the weekend are the likes of Loftus-Cheek and Barkley, but Sarri is more than likely to play a midfield 3 of Jorginho, Kante and Kovacic away at the Amex Stadium on the weekend.

Match Statistics

                                 Vidi                         Chelsea

Possession (%)       24                                76

Shots                          6                                  18

Shots on target          3                                   5

Corners                        3                                   11

Fouls                             15                                  14

 

Manager Comments (Source- Chelsea’s Official Twitter)

Chelsea Manager- Maurizio Sarri;

 Maurizio Sarri said at his post-match press conference that he was very happy with his players’ character having gone behind, adding there were however plenty of mistakes from a tactical point of view.

Sarri said that  he doesn’t think the injury Alvaro Morata picked up is too serious, but we will find out more tomorrow. The Italian admitted that  he was very pleased with the performances of Ethan Ampadu and Callum Hudson-Odoi tonight, pointing out the number of changes we made to the team as a whole made it harder for them.

Player/Manager Ratings

Vidi FC (4-3-2-1)

Kovacsik- 5 (Didn’t make any noticeable saves in the game)

Fiola- 8 (Excellent defending against the likes of Willian and Hudson-Odoi)

Juhász- 7 (Solid defending and got the assists for Ampadu’s own goal with his flicked header)

Vinicius- 6 (For the most parts was solid)

Stopira- 7 (Made good runs going forward)

Nego- 9 (MOTM) (Excellent goal and excellent performance)

Hadzic- 5 (Average)

Nikolov- 6 (Solid)

Milanov- 7 (Got the assist for Nego’s wonder goal)

Huszti- 6 (Contributed to Vidi’s positive attacking performance)

Scepovic- 6 (d=Delivered the cross which eventually lead to Ampadu’s own goal)

Subs;

Kovács- 5 (Didn’t impact the game)

Hodzic- 5 (Didn’t impact the game)

Patkci- 5 (Didn’t impact the game)

 

Manager Rating: Marko Nikolic- 7- picked his best side which ended up getting a famous 2-2 draw against Chelsea.

Chelsea (4-3-3)

Caballero- 7 (Made a superb save by Nego in the first half)

Emerson- 6 (Good in the attacking sense. But a little suspect defensively)

Ampadu- 5 (Scored an own goal, but other than that, he was average)

Christensen- 5 (Average)

Zappacosta- 6 (Good in the attacking sense like Emerson but was suspect defensively)

Barkley- 6 (Won the free kick which Giroud scored from)

Fabregas- 5 (Slow in the midfield)

Loftus-Cheek- 7 (best out of the midfield 3)

Hudson-Odoi- 7 (Promising glimpses from the youngster)

Morata- 3 (Unfortunate to pick up an injury. But before the injury had such a negative body language and lazy attitude)

Willian- 8 (Excellent free-kick and looked Chelsea’s most dangerous player today)

Subs;

Giroud- 8 (Scored a wonder free kick but could have had a hatrick)

Pedro- 7 (Wasn’t as good as Willian)

Manager Rating: Maurizio Sarri- 6- Picked a good enough team to win the game. Also gave chances to a few Chelsea youngsters which was a positive.

Position in Europa League table

Chelsea finished this years group stages of the Europa League at the top of Group L, with a points total of 16 points with a goal difference of +9. Vidi failed to qualify for the knockout rounds as BATE claimed second spot after their impressive 1-3 win away in Greece against PAOK today. Vidi had to better the BATE result which was highly unlikely before the kick off due to the fact that they were playing Chelsea. Vidi therefore finished in 3rd place with a reasonable points total of 7 points. They had a goal difference of -2.

Next games for both teams

Both teams are next in League action at the weekend, with Chelsea taking on Brighton away in the Premier League on Sunday at 1:30pm (UK time). Vidi host Ferencvaros in the Hungarian League this Sunday at 7:15 (UK time). Vidi wont be in Europa League action now as they were knocked out. Chelsea on the other hand, will have to wait to see who they will face in the Round of 32. But potential teams that the Blues could face are the likes of Shaktar, Galatasaray, Brugges or Victoria Plzen.

By Danyal Khan

Check out the ABDHFootball podcast this Friday where we will discuss all the Champions League and Europa League action.

Vidi vs Chelsea Match Preview: 12th December

Chelsea will be travelling to Hungary already qualified from  Group L, to face a Vidi side who will be fighting for the second spot alongside BATE Borisov.

Chelsea will be looking to maintain their impressive 100% record with a win in Hungary, as Maurizio Sarri  is expected to field a side, which is mixed with Chelsea fringe players and Chelsea youth players, as he will have an eye on Sunday’s Premier League clash away to Brighton.

Vidi host the Premier League side at the Groupama Arena in third position, but a draw or win may be enough to earn their place in the knockout stages of the competition.

They will need a favour from PAOK though, who face BATE Borisov who are the other team in Group L who will be competing for the second spot with Vidi.

Recent form in the Europa League for both teams

Vidi FC- L/L/W/W/L

Chelsea- W/W/W/W/W

Manager and Player Comments

Chelsea Manager- Maurizio Sarri (Source/Credit- Chelsea FC Official Twitter)

Asked about the incident on Saturday involving Raheem Sterling, Sarri says: ‘First of all I want to say I condemn any form of discrimination, but I have to stop here because there is an investigation.

‘Sarri says Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ethan Ampadu could feature tomorrow. He adds Ampadu has a good chance of featuring due to Gary Cahill being injured.

He adds that both players are ‘technically very good.’

On tomorrow’s game, Sarri says: ‘The last match against them was very difficult, they defended very well. Maybe tomorrow will bbe very different because they are fighting for qualification so they need to win.’

Sarri says he decided Kepa, Rudiger, Azpilicueta, Kante and Hazard all needed a rest, while Kovacic, Cahill and Moses are injured.

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Chelsea Player- Ruben Loftus Cheek (Source/Credit- Chelsea FC Official Twitter)

Loftus-Cheek says progress has been made regarding racism in football, but it remains a problem today. He says he personally has never suffered racist abuse on the pitch.

He reiterates the club’s stance regarding the ongoing investigation: that the hardest response will be taken if racist abuse has occurred.

Loftus-Cheek is asked about Ethan Ampadu: ‘He is a great boy and a funny lad. He is mentally strong and has a great attitude.’

Loftus-Cheek says the recent period has been really good for his confidence. He is enjoying being on the pitch more and more and says he is raring to go at the moment.

Ruben expects a really tough game tomorrow. ‘As a team and Chelsea Football Club, it’s important we keep the mentality of wanting to win every game and improving in every game.’

Team News (Source/Credit-  Sportsmole.co.uk)

Vidi FC

Nikolic will consider making changes to his team after their defeat to Ujpest at the weekend, with Istvan Kovacs a potential inclusion in midfield.

Marko Scepovic should get the nod in attack despite failing to score a single goal in Europe this season.

Chelsea FC

Ampadu and Hudson-Odoi should make a rare appearance in the starting lineup on Thursday night, while Willy Caballero could replace Kepa Arrizabalaga between the sticks.

The back four is likely to remain the same as in previous European fixtures, with David Luiz being left in West London and with one of Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso only making the bench.

Jorginho and N’Golo Kante are also unlikely to play any part, with Cesc Fabregas expected to start and Ross Barkley being provided with more minutes after a recent injury.

Jamie Cumming and George McEachran are amongst the Chelsea youngsters who will be travelling to Budapest this evening to take on Vidi tomorrow. The other young players who will be travelling to Budapest alongside these 2 players are the likes of Bulka, Ampadu and Hudson-Odoi.

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Predicted Line-Ups 

Vidi possible starting lineup:
Kovacsik; Fiola, Juhasz, Vinicius, Stopira; Nego, Kovacs, Patkai; Huszti, Milanov; Scepovic

Chelsea possible starting lineup:
Caballero; Zappacosta, Christensen, Cahill, Emerson; Ampadu, Fabregas, Barkley; Moses, Morata, Hudson-Odoi

Head to Head/ Match Statistics (Credit/Source- Sportsmole.co.uk)

Thursday’s game will represent just the second competitive meeting between the two clubs, with their only other contest coming earlier in this competition.

Chelsea will also be making their first-ever trip to Hungary to take on a team from the Nemzeti Bajnoksag I.

Vidi are also not familiar with facing English teams, with their only previous tie coming in 1985 when they got the better of Manchester United in the UEFA Cup quarter-finals.

Betting Odds/My Prediction

Bet 365 have made Chelsea clear favourites from this game considering that it is an away game in Hungary, with a Chelsea win being priced at 8/11. A draw between these two sides which could be enough for Vidi if BATE lose is being priced at 14/5. A surprise win for Vidi which is more than likely to take Vidi through in second spot is being priced at 9/2.

My Prediction is a tight 1-2 win to Chelsea. I think Vidi will be up for this game due to the fact that they need a positive result from this game, however there quality will shine through in the end in my opinion, and it will be a good chance for Chelsea’s fringe and young players to make a statement to Sarri for them to be included in the Premier League first team.

By Danyal Khan

 

 

Chelsea vs Manchester City 2-0 Match Report

Goals; Chelsea- Kante (44′) David Luiz (78′)

            Manchester City- None

Goals from Kante and David Luiz inflicted Manchester City’s first defeat of the season as the Champions were knocked off the top by Liverpool with the help of Chelsea as the  Royal Blues beat the light blues 2-0 at Stamford Bridge.

Maurizio Sarri’s side bounced back from the disappointment of losing at Wolves in midweek to end City’s 21-game unbeaten league run stretching back to April, and a sequence of 14 unbeaten games away from home.

City paid for a lack of ruthlessness as they dominated the first half completely, only to be struck by a Chelsea smash-and-grab right on half-time as N’Golo Kante fired high past Ederson from Eden Hazard’s pass.

Chelsea gained confidence and momentum and improved after the break, securing the win with 12 minutes left when David Luiz’s glancing header following a corner bounced in off the far post.

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They closed out the win to give Sarri his first triumph over Pep Guardiola and leave Liverpool top by one point following their convincing 4-0 win at Bournemouth earlier.

City were made to pay for lacking their killer touch. But this wasn’t helped by the fact that their 2 best players- De Bruyne and Agüero prior to this game were out with injuries, meaning that Guardiola couldn’t put out his full team. It also didn’t help that David Silva got injured in the second half. These next few weeks will really test out Manchester City squad depth and character. Can they bounce back and regain top spot over Liverpool in the next few weeks?

On the Other hand for Sarri, he deserves alot of credit for his tactics today- especially playing a false nine formation which worked really well in the second half, as all of the front three linked up really well and produced some lovely flowing football to cause City multiple problems.

Kepa kept his 8th clean sheet of the season. He is now level on clean sheets with Ederson, but still 2 behind Liverpool’s Alisson. This has shown his positive start to life at Chelsea so far under Sarri.

David Luiz (MOTM)  and Kante were thee standout performances from this performance, but questions will still be asked of Alonso due too the fact that he was exploited by the likes of Sterling and Mahrez.

Manager Comments

Chelsea Manager- Maurizio Sarri

“I am very happy with the win because it is not very easy to win against Manchester City or Pep Guardiola. I am happy with the mentality of the team in this match.

“It is difficult for us to find motivation but when we have it, we are a very strong team. Today we played with a very good level of application, determination and the right level of aggression.

“My players have to continue like this. We started well in the second half and in the end we deserved to win.”

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Manchester City Manager- Pep Guardiola

“At this level and in the Champions League, the quality of the opponents means they only need a half a chance to score. That was the reality.”

Despite slipping a point behind the Reds, the Spaniard rejected the notion his team had an “off day”.

“If you think that, you didn’t see the game,” he told BBC Sport. “In the first half, we were exceptional.

“In general, we were fantastic. I don’t have any regrets. We came and showed we wanted to win. We created chances. They had one in 44 minutes and we conceded a goal. Sometimes that happens.

“It is emotional for me to see these players do what they do every three days. We were outstanding except for five to eight minutes.”

Match Statistics

Chelsea                  Manchester City

Possession (%)             39                               61

Shots                               8                                  14

Shots on Target             5                                    4

Corners                            1                                    13

Fouls                                 12                                  11

Position in the Premier League table

Chelsea move above Arsenal into third place with 34 points, but have a better goal difference than the Gunners. However they are likely to move down to fourth if Tottenham beat Leicester tonight in the evening kick off. Manchester City move down to second with 41 points, but are 1 point off Klopp’s unbeaten reds so far this season! However City do have the better goal difference, so it is still all to play for…

Next games for both teams

Both teams play in Europe in midweek, completing groups from which they have already qualified. City host Hoffenheim in the Champions League on Wednesday and Chelsea have a Europa League trip to Vidi on Thursday.

In the Premier League, City’s home game against Everton is next Saturday’s 12:30 GMT kick-off, while Chelsea travel to Everton at 13:30 on Sunday.

By Danyal Khan

Chelsea vs Manchester City 2-0 Match Review and Player Ratings article

Match Review

Unsurprisingly, Manchester City started the much brighter team, and showed their intentions early on when David Silva’s cross inside the box deflected to Sterling who mishit his shot straight at Kepa. To tell you the truth, it was all Manchester City in the first half, and they had 2 chances through Sane and a flicked header across goal from a corner from Bernardo Silva to take the lead, but they didn’t take any of their chances. Manchester City’s dominance showed as after 17 minutes, stats showed that Chelsea had no passes in City’s final third, therefore illustrating where most of the game was being played.

Chelsea would have been happy to go in at half-time with a 0-0 draw. That would have felt like a moral victory for them. However it was even better then that, because right on half-time, Chelsea took a shock 1-0 lead through Kante’s world class finish into the roof of Ederson’s net after Hazard pulled back a lovely cross for the onrushing Kante to finish superbly.

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So going into half-time, Guardiola would have wanted more from his men, because they only had half chances in the first half. However for Sarri and Chelsea, they would want a repeat of the first half in terms of their defensive performance. However Sarri had a few concerns at half-time, especially up top where they had no focal point- did this game call out for Olivier Giroud in the second half? Also Alonso was being exploited heavily by the likes of Sterling- so did Emerson deserve a chance to replace an out of form Alonso by Sarri’s admission?

Surprisingly, it was role reversal in the second half due to the fact that Chelsea started the second half the much brighter team. They had a good chance to go 2-0 up aswell in the 48th minute when Willian’s free kick was well saved by Ederson.

However even though there were not alot of chances in the second half, the key difference between both halves were that Chelsea dominated possession unlike the first half and completely controlled the game in the second half. And they got their rewards for that in the 78th minute when a corner from the left side found the head of David Luiz who looped his header into the top right corner past a rooted Ederson! That was Luiz’s 1st goal of the season, and more importantly it lead to Chelsea being 2-0 up against the champions who had gone unbeaten all season prior to this point.

After that goal, the tempo of the game slowed down, and Chelsea did have a good chance to make it 3-0 but Barkley’s header glided wide of Ederson’s goal.

Kepa was heading for his 8th clean sheet of the season, but nearly ruined it in the last minute when his misplaced pass went straight to Jesus, but he redeemed himself when he produced a world class save to deny Jesus a late goal to get City back in the game late on.

But Chelsea held out and have really blown the title and top 4 race wide open! Liverpool are now top of the table due to Chelsea doing them a favour!

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Player and Manager Ratings

Chelsea (4-3-3 false 9)

Kepa- 7 (Solid performance other than his mistake in the last minute, but he redeemed himself with that save from Jesus)

Alonso- 5 (Average. Was getting exploited by Sterling)

(MOTM) Luiz- 10 (Outstanding performance! Like the mirror image of the Liverpool game. And the second goal topped off his wonderful performance)

Rüdiger- 8 (Brilliant defensive performance with David Luiz to keep Manchester City out)

Azpilicueta- 8 (His game of the season. Defensively solid)

Jorginho- 7 (Good game for him today. Controlled Chelsea’s midfield)

Kovacic- 8 (Played very well until he got injured)

Kante- 9 (Excellent defensively and in the attacking sense today. His goal topped it off)

Pedro- 8 (Linked up very well with Hazard and Willian especially in the second half)

Willian- 8 (Linked up very well with Pedro and Hazard in the second half)

Hazard- 7 (Was so much better in the second half)

Subs;

Barkley- 7 (Came on and made a positive impact)

Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Came on and made a positive impact)

Giroud- 5 (Didn’t have enough time to make an impact)

Manager Rating: Maurizio Sarri- 9- Got his plan spot on tonight playing a false 9.

Manchester City (4-3-3 false 9)

Ederson- 6 (Couldn’t do anything about the goals)

Walker- 7 (Played well overall)

Laporte- 6 (Was solid for most part of the game)

Delph- 5 (Was caught out defensively in the second half)

Bernardo Silva- 5 (Didn’t create enough in the midfield)

Fernandinho- 6 (Average)

David Silva- 8 (Was a positive influence in the first half. Just a blow with his injury in the second half)

Mahrez- 6 (Didn’t create enough)

Sterling- 7 (One of City’s best players. Caused multiple problems for Alonso)

Sané- 8 (Was City’s best player in the first half. Surprised he was taken off over Mahrez)

Subs;

Jesus- 6 (Had one good chance but didn’t impact the game in a positive way)

Gündoğan- 6 (Didn’t do alot when he came on)

Foden- 5 (Didn’t have enough time to impact the game)

Manager Rating: Pep Guardiola- 7- Didn’t do much wrong. Picked the right side considering some of his best players were injured, just beaten by the better side today.

 

Check out my Match Report and also check out Chivers and Ron ‘Chopper’ Harris’s post-match analysis  podcast from this game on Sportstalkline.com

By Danyal Khan

 

 

Chelsea vs Manchester City: Match Preview- 8th December

Chelsea come into this game low in confidence after their shock 2-1 loss midweek against Wolves at the Molineux.

They will be looking to shock the Champions when they host them at Stamford Bridge this Saturday in the late kickoff.

Chelsea will be happy to be playing Manchester City at home, as their home record is much better at this moment then their away record. If this game was at the Etihad Stadium, it would be less likely that Chelsea would take anything off City, due to City’s home form being so good, and the Blues having a recent poor run away from home in the Premier League.

Chelsea have lost their last 2 away games in the Premier League- away to Tottenham  and Wolves.

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On the Other hand, Manchester City come into this game on the good form, on the back of their tight 2-1 away win against Watford.

City will be looking to maintain their 2 point gap over Liverpool over the weekend with a win at Stamford Bridge.  Chelsea, however, will be looking to maintain their place in the top 4 with a surprise win against the title favourites.

Liverpool will also be looking for a favour from Chelsea to take points off City, to help them in the title race.

Recent form in Premier League

Chelsea- W/D/L/W/L

Manchester City-  W/W/W/W/W

Team News

Chelsea

Chelsea pair Jorginho and David Luiz were unused substitutes for the midweek defeat by Wolves and are expected to be recalled on Saturday.

Ross Barkley is back in contention after an ankle injury.

Manchester City

Manchester City’s record scorer Sergio Aguero will miss a third successive game because of muscle tightness.

Oleksandr Zinchenko is also a doubt due to a facial injury, while the match comes too soon for playmaker Kevin De Bruyne.

Predicted Line-ups

Chelsea predicted 11-  Kepa; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Emerson; Kante, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek; Pedro, Giroud, Hazard

Manchester City predicted 11-  Ederson; Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Delph; Gundogan, Fernandinho, Bernardo; Mahrez, Jesus, Sterling

Manager comments

Chelsea- Manager: Maurizio Sarri 

“I knew very well that sooner or later we have to face difficulties. When you change the way of playing, the way of football, you need to change the mentality.

“You need to change the mentality in 25 minds, so it’s not a short way. It’s very difficult.

“We have a problem to manage the match at the moment. In the last two matches we played well for 55, 60 minutes, then the first difficulty we went in blackout. We didn’t react as a team, but as 11 players – in 11 different ways. So it’s a big problem.”

Maurizio Sarri’s press conference round up- Credit: @NizaarKinsella

Sarri press conference ahead of City:

  1. No injuries at all for Chelsea
  2. #MCFC might be the best team in Europe
  3. #CFC need more leadership as they “lack determination”
  4. Admits Alonso not playing well but insists he isn’t tired, likes his set-pieces
  5. Emerson could replace him

Manchester City- Manager: Pep Guardiola 

“Tomorrow is another huge demanding test for us. How will they react after losing? I can imagine how intense, committed they will be.

“I have been to Stamford Bridge many times and I have won once, last season; always I lose there. They are a good side, a really good team. When you see the XI and the people on the bench, they are a real contender.”

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Head-to-Head record

These two sides have met 158 times in all competitions with Chelsea surprisingly having the better head to head record out of the two sides. Chelsea have won 64 times against Manchester City over the years. Whereas, City have only beaten Chelsea 55 times. There have been 39 draws between these two clubs in all competitions.

Previous encounters between the two sides

This will be the second time that these two sides have met this season, having also faced off in the Community Shield in August. Man City ran out 2-0 winners at Wembley courtesy of Aguero’s brace.

Indeed, City have won each of the last three contests against Chelsea – including 1-0 triumphs home and away last season – and could record four successive victories against the West Londoners for the first time in their history this weekend.

Chelsea have lost two of their last three home Premier League games against City – the same amount as they suffered in their first 18 such matches against them in the competition – and another defeat on Saturday would consign them to back-to-back top-flight home defeats at the hands of City for the first time since January 1955.

Betting Odds/My Prediction

Unsurprisingly, Bet 356  have made Manchester City favourites to pick up a win at Stamford Bridge this Saturday with a City winning being priced at 19/20. A draw between these two sides is being priced at 14/6, and a Chelsea win is being priced at 3/1.

My realistic prediction for this game is a 1-3 Manchester City win. Manchester City looks unstoppable this season and I think that they will be too much for Chelsea. They will most likely expose Chelsea’s weaknesses in defence like Tottenham did recently in their 3-1 over Chelsea.

However, my Optimistic prediction for this game is a 2-2 draw. There’s no explanation for this… just hope!

By Danyal Khan

Wolves vs Chelsea 2-1 Match Report and Player Ratings article

Goals: Wolves- Jimenez (58′) D.Jota (62′)

              Chelsea- Conor Coady own goal (17′)

Jiménez and Jota quickfire goals in the second half, was enough for Wolves to upset Chelsea in the Premier League.

Unsurprisingly, Chelsea came out of the blocks faster  and an early wayward attempt from Hazard demonstrated the Blues intent to put alot of pressure on the Wolverhampton backline from minute 1 to minute 90. The game was open from the start, with both teams looking to attack each other.

However, Chelsea took the lead in the 17th minute when a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot from the edge of the box was inadvertently headed into his own net by an unlucky Conor Coady. That goal summed up Wolves’s poor form recently, as that was entirely bad luck for the Molineux side. The replays showed that the ball was on target, and it looked like Patricio was going to save it comfortably before Coady intervened accidentally to Chelsea’s favour. However it did go down officially as a Coady own goal rather than a Loftus-Cheek goal.

Chelsea had a few chances to extend their lead to 0-2 before the break, and their best chances to add to their lead fell to Willian. His first chance in the 22nd minute from a free kick on the left hand side of the box, was tipped over the bar superbly by the Portuguese keeper. However for his second chance a few minutes before half-time, a late Ryan Bennet challenge halted Willian from finishing off an inevitable 1-on-1. Wolves would have had their keeper and Bennet to thank if they were to gain any points from tonight’s game.

Wolves did create Chelsea a few problems in the first half, and one of their best chances fell to Jiménez in the 26th minute when his header was guided just over Kepa’s bar. However their best chance of the half came in the 36th minute, and a vital Cesc Fabregas intervention denied a certain goal for the bright Wolves youngster- Morgan Gibbs-White who was about to latch on to a pullback in the box before the Spaniard slide in superbly to deny Wolves an equaliser.

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So as we went into half-time, it was still all to play for as Chelsea had a slender 1-0 lead at a place where top 6 sides like Manchester City had dropped points earlier on in the season. So could Sarri’s men hold on and extend their lead to pick up an impressive win to solidify their top 4 spot going into the weekend, or will Nuno’s men up the intensity on the blues in the second half and turn this game around to gain 1 point or maybe 3?

The second half started the way the first half did, with Chelsea on top, but they had a chance to extend their 1 goal lead to 2 seconds after half-time when Loftus-Cheek’s ball was flashed across the box after beautiful link up play with Hazard, and Morata looked like he would tap in, however Boly did enough to put Morata off and send him in the net rather than the ball! Would that be the turning point of the game?

It was! As in the 58th minute, Morgan Gibbs-White piece of individual brilliance ended up with Jiménez who’s shot went straight through Kepa, who was probably at fault for that goal completely, which was unfortunate for the young Spaniard. Morgan Gibbs-White had a big part to play in Wolves levelling at 1-1!

Would Chelsea’s brittle and unreliable defence crumble? It did! and it was in controversial fashion. As Willian was dispossessed in midfield with the Brazilian complaining for a foul on him twice before the ball was nicked from him, however the referee waved away his complaints, and from that attack, a ball across the box from the Wolves wide player found Jota in acres of space inside the Chelsea box to tap in past Kepa to complete the comeback and make it 2-1 to Wolves? But the question remained, could Wolves hold out for a famous win which could reignite their season after a poor run?

The answer was yes, and Chelsea made it easy for them. You would have expected Chelsea to throw the kitchen sink at Wolves, but desptie Sarri bringing on Pedro, Giroud and Kovacic, they only created 1 good chance before the game was over and that was wasted by Fabregas in the 87th minute, when Marcos Alonso’s cutback fell to Fabregas inside the box, and he lifted his effort over Patricio’s bar.

This famous win for Wolves could reignite their season now. But for Chelsea, that is now 2 consecutive away defeats this season in the league! Title race over for them now, and all focus will be getting top 4 as the race for the top 4 is so tight.

Player and Manager Ratings

Wolves (3-4-3)

Patricio- 8 (Made an outstanding save from Willian’s free kick to keep the margin at only 0-1 in the first half)

Bennet- 8 (Made a vital challenge to deny Willian a 1-on-1 goal!)

Coady- 6 (Other than an own goal, was pretty solid tonight)

Boly- 8 (Made a vital challenge to deny Morata a tap in right after half-time)

Doherty- 7 (Caused Chelsea multiple problems down Chelsea’s left hand side)

Moutinho- 6 (Played some lovely passes, but on the whole was average)

Saiss- 5 (Average. Was close to being sent off)

Vinagre- 7 (Caused Chelsea problems down the right-hand side)

Gibbs-White- 9 (Outstanding in the second half! Brilliant assist for Jiménez equaliser)

Jiménez- 7 (Was pretty anonymous for most of the night, but when he was neaded, he provided the goods and equalised for Wolves)

Subs;

H.Costa-  7 (Did everything he needed to do when he came on)

Dendocker- 6 (Wasn’t on long enough- but did solidify Wolves’s midfield and helped them hold out for a win)

Manager Rating- Nuno Espirito Santo- 9- Got his tactics spot on! And his subs made an impact!

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Chelsea (4-3-3)

Kepa- 6 (Made a massive mistake for Wolves’s equaliser)

Azpilicueta- 6 (Solid but was caught out of Wolves’s second goal)

Christensen- 5 (Poor in the second half)

Rüdiger- 5 (Poor in the second half)

Alonso- 2 (Worst player on the pitch. Needs to be dropped for Emerson at the weekend as he looks tired)

Kanté- 5 (Average. Gave the ball away on many occasions)

Fàbregas- 6 (Average, good for most part, but missed the vital chance to help Chelsea gain at least a point in the second half)

Loftus-Cheek- 8 (Excellent. Got the assist for the goal, but looked very sharp and could be Sarri’s answer to Chelsea’s midfield problems)

Willian- 4 (Lethargic for most part. At fault for the second goal completely!)

Hazard- 6 (Average for his standards)

Morata- 5 (Average. Didn’t have too many chances)

Subs;

Pedro- 6 (Looked better than Willian)

Giroud- 5 (Didn’t have enough time to impact the game)

Kovacic- 5 (Added nothing to the midfield when he came on)

Manager Rating- Maurizio Sarri- 5- Did rotate his side, but it was clear that he needs reinforcements in January- especially a new Striker, a new Right Winger and a new centre back as Christensen has proved tonight and in his other appearances this season that he is not good enough for this Chelsea team.

Match Statistics

                               Wolves                    Chelsea

Possession (%)         30                            70

Shots                            6                              17

Shots on Target          2                               3

Corners                         1                               5

Fouls                              18                            10

Position in PL table

Chelsea slip to 4th in the table on goal difference after Tottenham’s 3-1 win over Southampton lifts them to 3rd place- 2 points ahead of the Blues. However, Arsenal’s point at Old Trafford tonight means they are level on  points with Chelsea, but are 5th on goal difference, but the Gunners would expect Chelsea to slip up against Manchester City meaning that if they beat Huddersfield on Saturday then they could leapfrog Chelsea into 4th! So Chelsea’s top 4 position is in danger after this damaging defeat at the Molineux tonight against a resurgent Wolves side! For Wolves they are in 12th place with 19 points, but the main point for them tonight was to end the rot… And they did that with a famous win against a lethargic Chelsea side in the second half.

Next games for both teams

Both teams are back in action this weekend, However Chelsea play on Saturday 8th December where they take on the Champions, Manchester City at Stamford Bridge at 5:30pm (UK time), whereas Wolves travel to Newcastle on Sunday to take on the Northern club at 4:00pm (UK time).

Check out Chivers and Ron ‘Chopper’ Harris’s post match analysis podcast after the game tonight which will be posted later this week on Sportstalkline.com

By Danyal Khan