Manchester United Travel to Stamford Bridge
Last updated: February 24, 2021 by Leon Marshal
|Last Meeting:||Man United 0 – 0 Chelsea|
Sunday’s big game features two teams hoping to keep their faint title hopes alive. Manchester United travel to Stamford Bridge to face a Chelsea team unbeaten under their new manager. A Chelsea win would reduce the gap between the clubs to just three points.
Thomas Tuchel has enjoyed a stellar start to his Stamford Bridge career, unbeaten in the first eight games in charge of the London club (six wins and two draws). His side has scored ten goals and conceded just two goals, one of which was Antonio Rudiger’s own goal. This impressive managerial bounce has propelled the Blues to fifth, two points within reach of the top four. A 1-0 win against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League in midweek and another clean sheet is a big morale boost for the Blues heading to this weekend’s game.
The former PSG and Dortmund manager has a nightmare run of fixtures; Atletico Madrid in the Champions League’s return leg and this game against Manchester United in the league is followed by games against Liverpool Everton and Leeds United.
One of Tuchel’s first acts since taking over the Stamford Bridge hot-seat has been to reintegrate players frozen during the Frank Lampard tenure. Kepa Arrizabalaga has kept two clean sheets while Marcos Alonso, who scored in their 2 – 0 win against Burnley, are notable names. These returning players have produced the goods for Tuchel, and it gives the squad more depth to deal with this busy schedule.
Mason Mount has been Chelsea’s most consistent player yielding five goals and six assists in thirty-three games. His emergence has eased the pressure on the front line, which has struggled at times. Timo Werner ended a fourteen-game drought when he scored and assisted in their last win against Newcastle in the league, and Chelsea fans will hope that the German can bring consistency to his game. The return of Christian Pulisic is a huge boost for the Blues, as are the performances of 20-year-old Callum Hudson-Odoi, who is exceptional at making key passes. Rather than looking like a team of individuals as they did earlier in the season, Chelsea is looking more like a team with a fierce well-balanced attack.
Manchester United have had the upper hand in recent games in this fixture in the league. Unbeaten in the last five, they have won two and drawn three. The Red Devils took all six points in this fixture last season but had to settle for a 0-0 draw when the teams met in the league in October. A worry for United fans will be the current slump against the ‘big-six’, with no wins with four draws and two defeats.
They are on a good run of losing just two of the last nineteen games since they lost three games in the first six games (including the infamous 6 – 1 thumping by Tottenham). The Red Devils have scored fifty-three goals in twenty-five games, numbers only eclipsed by the sixty goals tally of their 2012-13 title-winning season and are the league’s top scorers, three ahead of Manchester City. A big factor in this tally is the nine they scored against Southampton in the 9-0 win in February.
In United’s last game, they took the three points in a hard-fought 3 – 1 victory against Newcastle. They went ahead thanks to a Marcus Rashford goal in the 30th minute before Newcastle levelled things with a 36th-minute goal by the impressive Allan Saint-Maximin. Daniel James gave them the lead in the 57th minute before Bruno Fernandes made sure of the points from the spot with fifteen minutes left to play.
Daniel James is pressing his claim to be in the first team after scoring two goals in the last two starts. The Welshman now has five goals in thirteen games, one more than he managed in forty-six games in all competitions last season.
Bruno Fernandes (fifteen goals and ten assists) ranks among the elites to attain double figures for goals and assists. His tally of fifteen goals and ten assists is only bettered by Harry Kane (thirteen goals and eleven assists) and Thomas Muller (ten goals and ten assists). Marcus Rashford is the fourth-best scorer with forty goals in the competition since the start of last season. Those who have scored more are; Raheem Sterling (forty-four), Harry Kane (forty-five), and Mohammed Salah (forty-seven).
The Red Devils are a serious goal-threat on the counter-attack against a well-established Chelsea’s defence should ensure a tight but entertaining game.
Pulisic is back in the ranks after a series of recurring injuries.
Timo Werner ended a fourteen game goal drought, scoring and assisting in their previous win against Newcastle.
Bruno Fernandes (fifteen goals and ten assists) is the third player in Europe’s top five, behind Muller and Kane.
Man United are ten points behind the league leaders Man City and six points clear of their weekend opponents.
|Chelsea (3-4-2-1):||Mendy, James, Silva, Rudiger, Chilwell, Kante, Jorginho, Mount, Ziyech, Abraham, Werner|
|Subs:||Arrizabalaga, Giroud, Hudson-Odoi, Emerson, Tomori, Kovacic, Christensen, Azpiliqueta, Pulisic|
|Manchester United (4-3-3):||De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw, Fred, Matic, James, Fernandez, Rashford, Cavani|
|Subs:||Henderson, Tuanzebe, Mata, Lingard, Bailly, van de Beek, Martial, Greenwood|
So Far This Season
|Chelsea This Season||United This Season|
|12 (6)||Wins (away)||14 (8)|
|4 – 0 v Palace||Biggest Win||9 – 0 v Southampton|
|7 (3)||Draws (away)||7 (4)|
|1 – 3 v Arsenal||Biggest Defeat||1 – 6 v Spurs|
|Abraham (6)||Top Goal Scorer||Fernandes (15)|
|Y34, R1||Discipline||Y39, R1|
|6||Failures to Score||5|
|44%||Both Teams to Score Games||64%|
|16%||Over 2.5 Goals||20%|
|84%||Under 2.5 Goals||80%|
- The two sides have met 57 times; Chelsea have triumphed eighteen times against the Red Devils, seventeen with twenty-two draws between them.
- Manchester United sit second six points clear of Chelsea, who are fifth and ten points behind Man City at the top of the table.
- Bruno Fernandes has fifteen goals and ten assists, while Abraham (six goals) their best scorer and Timo Werner has five assists for the Blues.
- Chelsea needs a result more to keep up the Champions League qualification battle while United need to stay close to Man City to take advantage if they slip up.
Head to Head
|Last 5 meetings between the two sides|
|Date||Competition||Game Result||First Goal-scorer|
|24/10/2020||EPL||Man United 0 – 0 Chelsea||—|
|19/07/2020||FA Cup||Man United 1 – 3 Chelsea||Giroud 45’|
|17/02/2020||EPL||Chelsea 0 – 2 Man United||Martial 45’|
|30/10/2019||EPL||Chelsea 1 – 2 Man United||Rashford 25’|
|11/08/2019||EPL||Man United 4 – 0 Chelsea||Rashford 18’|
Conclusion & Betting Tips
Chelsea’s decision to part with club legend Frank Lampard appears to be paying dividends. The new man Tuchel has given exiled players a chance, and he has been paid back as a result with good displays. They are the form team between the two, last suffering defeat under the old manager against Leicester and are unbeaten under the new manager.
United are unbeaten in five, but costly draws against Arsenal, West Bromwich and Everton have seen them lost ground over neighbours City. They are the league’s top scorers but always seem vulnerable at the back, as seen in the 3-3 draw with Everton in which they were in control.
Much has been made of United’s great away form, undefeated so far this campaign; however, we feel that the run will end here against a Chelsea side that is beginning to click. A tight game with Chelsea winning by a solitary goal @ 8/1 with bet365 is our shout.