The only two teams who could probably catch the runaway leaders Manchester United this season in the English Premier League, clash on Sunday and a loss for either of them could all but end the title race.
What: EPL,Game Week 27
Who: Manchester City FC vs. Chelsea FC
Where: Etihad Stadium, Manchester, England
When: Sunday, February 24, 2013
Time: 13:30 GMT
A win for City will cut the gap down to 12 points and with 11 games still to go, the Sky Blues will believe they’ll have an outside chance to retain the title. On the other hand, a win for Chelsea will still put them 16 points adrift of Manchester United but it will give the Blues the much required momentum going into the final few weeks of the League.
Manchester City Team News:
Midfielder Gareth Barry,who injured his ankle in the last week’s FA Cup win over Leeds will miss the game.
Captain Vincent Kompany remains a doubt for the match after already missing four games with a calf injury. Micah Richards remains sidelined.
Joe Hart is set to come back in goal after Pantilimon started the last weekend F.A. Cup match while Lescott is set to partner Nastasic in the heart of defence.
Mancini is likely to field in a strong team with Silva,Yaya Toure,Barry, Tevez and Aguero all likely to start.
Chelsea Team News :
Ashley Cole, Ivanovich and Lampard will all start after being rested for the midweek Europa League match against Sparta Prague.
Fernando Torres could start on the bench and make way for Demba Ba who was cup tied for the last match. Now scoreless in his last 14 games, Torres should be replaced by Demba Ba for this match as his dismal form continues.
The Nigerian duo of Mikel and Moses are back for the Blues after their successful African Cup Of Nations run. Though Moses figured in the midweek match, this will be the first league appearance for both the players after coming back from Africa.
So Benitez has all his key players available and should field his strongest XI.
Last season was probably the best season of their history for both the teams but they have been given a reality check this time around. A win tomorrow will probably not change much in the title race but it will surely give the winning team a satisfaction of beating a fellow title contender.