Chelsea v Manchester United: Premier League match preview
A look ahead to this weekend's Premier League fixture at Stamford Bridge
Saturday 18 January 2014
This Sunday’s pivotal Premier League clash could feature the return of Wayne Rooney for Manchester United, while Stamford Bridge may be the stage to unveil Nemanja Matic, who re-joined Chelsea this Wednesday for a fee of £21m.
Rooney has been suffering with a groin injury and was recently sent on warm weather training, hoping to be ready for this Sunday. The forward has not featured for United since their 2-1 defeat to Tottenham on New Year’s Day.
Matic could jump straight into Chelsea’s starting XI in the absence of Frank Lampard, who is still out until the end of the month with a thigh injury. Jose Mourinho may have little choice but to start with the combative midfielder, due to his insistence that he does not want to play David Luiz in the holding-role and continuing question-marks over John Obi Mikel’s contribution to the team.
Although the Serbian might make his second debut for Chelsea alongside Ramires, in Mourinho’s favoured midfield double-pivot, he may have to settle for a place on the bench, as this is often the tendency with new signings.
The Blues head into the game in a superb run of form and with a great recent record against Manchester United. They have won four on the spin in the league and have remained unbeaten against United in their last five meetings, winning three of them.
The Red Devils got back on track in last weekend’s win against Swansea, to end a run of three straight losses in all competitions. Consistency is the key for United though, as they remain five points adrift of the Champions League positions.
KICK-OFF: Sunday, 4pm
PAST THREE MEETINGS:
Manchester United 0 Chelsea 0, Premier League, August 2013
Manchester United 0 Chelsea 1 (Mata), Premier League, May 2013
Chelsea 1 (Ba) Manchester United 0, FA Cup, April 2013
United haven’t scored against Chelsea in the last three times they’ve played
Chelsea are on a four match winning streak in the Premier League
United have only won once in their last 11 visits to Stamford Bridge in the Premier League
Chelsea are unbeaten at home in the Premier League this season
United are unbeaten in their last seven away games in the Premier League
Chelsea to win: 1.80
Manchester United to win: 4.75
TV: Live on Sky Sports 1 at 4pm, Highlights on BBC1 at 10.25pm
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