The power of eight for City
Chelsea will be looking to recover from a dip in form but they’ll face a tough task doing so against the reigning champions, the visitors to the Bridge for the live game on Saturday evening.
Talk of Maurizio Sarri emulating his fellow countryman Antonio Conte by winning the Premier League at the first attempt is now over. Two defeats from the last three have put paid to that with momentum lost and the opening of a 10 point gap between themselves and the top. Now, it’s all about staying in the top four for the Blues.
This is easier said than done however. Chelsea are off key at the moment and have won just one of their last four domestically. Even the victory over Fulham came via a rather laboured performance.
Chelsea have flattered to deceive
It’s what was predicted from this Blues side prior to the season though. Even the most ardent Stamford Bridge goer couldn’t argue with the fact Chelsea have flattered to deceive for the most part, despite managing to keep pace with the pacesetters early on.
A fortunate win versus Arsenal early on was followed by a lacklustre display at the London Stadium against West Ham. They were then largely outplayed when Mourinho’s Man United come to the Bridge only to escape with a draw in the dying seconds. Crystal Palace gave them a good run for their money while they could only take a point from a dominant display against Everton.
Nobody could say these defeats weren’t coming and the manner of the losses will have hurt: they just didn’t show up away to Spurs at Wembley, while to lose at Wolves having led for so long and dominated possession suggests a lack of conviction and, it has to be said, quality.
Seven consecutive victories. Fifteen games unbeaten. Scoring goals for fun. A goal difference of +38 already. Winning whilst resting key players. Top of the league and looking set to follow up their record-breaking season with another...
It’s hard to know where to start with this City side. The simple fact of the matter is they’re in a league of their own. Ok, you could argue they should be with the resources available but there is just no let up from this Pep Guardiola team.
Simply a winning machine
It's likely a quick glance at the first XI prior to hosting Bournemouth and visiting Vicarage Road would have raised spirits for the respective opposition. Yet, regardless of who plays and who sits out, City are simply a winning machine who seem, incapable of losing. It’s a strange statement to make – usually a team appears incapable of winning, but it’s the polar opposite for the Citizens; at times, we’re even shocked they’ve conceded a goal.
Playing Chelsea represents their toughest assignment since playing another of the so-called big six, Liverpool. They dropped points on that occasion but were only a spot kick away from winning and would have on another day.
The nature of the opposition will warrant bringing back the big guns together but, having gotten the better of Chelsea in the last three meetings, there’s little to suggest City’s winning run won't roll on here.
Chelsea were riding high just a couple of weeks back but their form of late will see them start on the back foot and dictated to by the visitors for the majority.
Backing City to win at best market odds of 10/11 (1.92) seems a no-brainer! I think Chelsea have finally been found out and they won’t be looking forward to the prospect of welcoming the Champions who will record an eighth straight success with all three points.
Nick's tip: City to win at 10/11 with BetVictor