One of the most anticipated matches of the season sees a struggling Chelsea side with a new manager take on Manchester City who are freshly relegated from the Champions League. Both Captains of the clubs are set to miss the game with John Terry definitely out while Kompany will undergo a late fitness test.
Who : Chelsea vs. Manchester City
What : English Premier League, Week 13
Where : Stamford Bridge, London
When : Sunday, November 25, 2012
Time : 16:00 GMT
Referee : Chris Foy
A new revolution begins on Sunday at the Bridge when their new interim manager Rafa Benitez takes charge of his first game against Manchester City. He was appointed immediately after the sacking of the fan favorite Roberto Di Matteo after the Blues had a series of bad results.
The fans are still upset about the sacking but more importantly about the appointment of the new boss Benitez. With heated press conferences against the Blues while in charge of Liverpool, it will be interesting to see how the Blues fans will react towards Benitez.
But Rafa and Abramovich will hope that the players see a similar change in fortunes of last year when a new man RDM not only inspired the players immensely but also won Chelsea 2 titles in 3 months.
Torres, after having a descent start to the season is back to where he left last season : in horrible form. The Chelsea #9 had the best spells of his footballing career under Rafa and everyone will hope to see him regain the form. He is set to start following Sturridge’s injury in training in the midweek.
Chelsea will miss both Terry and Lampard and Benitez will likely drop David Luiz to the bench after his poor form and start his country lad Azpi on the right with Ivanovich partnering Cahill in the middle.
The front 6 should be the same for Chelsea as expected.
Possible Line-Up (4-2-3-1) :
Azpilicuetta, Ivanovic, Cahill, Cole;
Mata, Hazard, Oscar;
Manchester City :
Mancini and City are in a similar position as Chelsea. Their main focus, the Champions League is out of their hands for the second time running. The least they were expected to do was to qualify for the knockout rounds which they are yet to do in their history. But the only reason Mancini still has the job is the fact that they are the leaders of the Premier League and had been put in the Group of Death yet again in the Champions League.
Apart from Micah Richards, Mancini has a full squad to choose for the trip to London.
Manchester City captain Kompany (knee) will be given a fitness test ahead of the trip to Chelsea after suffering injury late in the midweek clash with Real Madrid.
Striker Mario Balotelli, dropped for the defeat of Tottenham a fortnight ago, has been training after being forced out of the last two games by a back injury.
Left-back Gael Clichy (ankle) is back in contention while midfielder Jack Rodwell (hamstring) edges closer to a return but right-back Micah Richards (knee) is still out.
Possible Line-Up (4-4-2) :
Zabaleta,Lescott Nastasic, Kolarov;
Nasri, Y Toure, Barry, Silva;
Prediction : Chelsea 1-1 Manchester City