Manchester City vs Chelsea: Score Predictions – The prelude before the big dance

It’s Manchester City vs Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League. While all of the talk is on how these two English powerhouses are squaring off later in the month to determine who will be crowned Europe’s best, this game in itself represents a high-stakes affair. On one hand, if the Citizens win, they will be crowned this season’s Premier League Champions. On the other, if the Blues beat Pep’s men again following their FA Cup semi-final triumph, they will leapfrog the Foxes into third spot and give themselves a real boost of finishing in the all-important Champions League qualification places. Adding to this backdrop is that there will be some tantalising individual clashes to show the footballing community who is the genuine dominant force in the nation and Europe. With that in mind, some of the writers at The Chelsea Social give their predictions regarding the Manchester City vs Chelsea clash.

Score Predictions – The Chelsea Social (Edit: @cfc_kev)
Score Predictions – The Chelsea Social (Edit: @cfc_kev)

Manchester City vs Chelsea: Introduction

Regardless of the occasion, Manchester City vs Chelsea is always an intriguing contest. This game represents two of England’s top tier clubs and more fancied rivalries given the ascension they have made since the turn of the century following the foreign investment into the two respective clubs.

However, besides the usual bells and whistles that accompany this fixture, there are a plethora of storylines concurrently happening that add that extra bit of spice to this particular clash. Firstly, City know that a win here at home will confirm their status as Premier League champions. Secondly, Guardiola and his men will still be licking their wounds following their FA Cup semi-final loss to Tuchel’s tricky Blues which ended their chances of winning an unprecendented quad. And finally, the two shades of blue will be meeting at the end of the month to play for what many consider to be the trophy of trophies – the Champions League! On an individual level, there are mouth-watering matchups: Mount vs Foden, Mendy vs Ederson, Kante vs De Bruyne, and ofcourse, Tuchel vs Guardiola.

While the Citizens do have a good record at the Etihad against the Blues in recent times, and have also managed to get the victory more often than not when versing Chelsea, as the adage goes: ‘you’re only as good as your last performance’. Therefore, Tuchel will be hoping his troops believe in this mantra given their heroics in the FA Cup semi-final whereby they played superbly to beat the Citizens 1-0 and advance to the final.

Pivoting back to this pivotal clash, the Blues will be hoping that they can continue their generally good form and maintain the positive momentum generated with a further confidence-boosting win against the soon-to-be champions. That said, there’s some talk amongst the Chelsea community that a win isn’t necessarily a must given the mini buffer they have in their quest for the top four, especially following Leicester’s dramatic 4-2 loss against Newcastle earlier which gives Chelsea the ability to leapfrog them when they play in the league a few days after their FA Cup final battle. However, there’s also a section of the fan base that look to this game as being a must win, not only for their top four aspirations, but to gain a psychological advantage ahead of the monumental Champions League final clash.

Without further ado, let’s dive into how the writers at The Chelsea Social feel the Manchester City vs Chelsea contest will unfold.

Can the Blues overcome the Premier League Champions-elect just like they did in the FA Cup semi-final? Credit | Adam Davy/Reuters
Can the Blues overcome the Premier League Champions-elect just like they did in the FA Cup semi-final? Credit | Adam Davy/Reuters

RJ (@RJ_Goodthings)

What a match we have in store. Manchester City vs Chelsea is a fixture that always gives me both plenty of nerves yet lot of excitement given I always want to see how we perform against the best, and City is right up there. In addition, I was impressed with how the Blues overcame the Citizens in the FA Cup semi-final and played a generally strong game to add to the notion that Tuchel’s Chelsea are certainly a formidable force, particularly against the ‘bigger’ opponents.

In terms of this clash though, I shared in my preview that we shouldn’t take this match lightly given we technically have room to recover if the result doesn’t go our way. I believe in momentum and that at this time of the season, results outweigh performances but the nuance with this fixture is that we also verse this opponent in the Champions League final and therefore the performance as well needs to be at a sufficient standard from a psychological perspective. In other words, while the result should be the no.1 priority given we are well and truly locked in the top four race, I believe we need to deliver a strong enough showing to ensure that when the full time whistle blows, the team, Tuchel and us fans can reflect on the match and say to ourselves in terms of thinking about the Champions League final: ‘we’ve got this, we can do it, we can beat them‘.

While we had some foreshadowing from Tuchel that he expects to make some changes to his line-up, the questions are: 1) How much rotation is he considering? And, 2) Who is he thinking will earn the chance to start this all-important clash. I discussed this in my preview and it’s fair to say that regarding certain positions I’m left conflicted as I’m trying to balance the need to manage fatigue, injuries and keeping the core of the group together. In the end, Tuchel knows best and whoever he picks I will continue to back him as he’s shown that he gets it right more often than not.

In the end, a hugely entertaining, important and challenging clash awaits. A win will be highly difficult no doubt, but not impossible as we’ve seen recently, and we need to believe in our abilities to give ourselves every chance of maintaining our well-worked momentum. Here’s hoping we walk away with a massive 3 points! Come on you Blues!

Final Score: Manchester City 1 – 2 Chelsea

Matt (@MattNorth_)

Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea are in back to league action following Wednesday’s brilliant victory over Real Madrid which saw us reach the Champions League Final. The Blues travel to the Etihad to take on Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City and at a ground we haven’t won at for nearly five years. However, Tuchel’s men defeated City last month in the semi-finals of the FA Cup and the German will be hoping to yet again get one over his Spanish counterpart. On Wednesday, Chelsea defeated Real Madrid 2-0 in what was a convincing performance against Los Blancos to get us through to the final where we’ll be taking on our opponents for this game in Manchester City. It is highly likely that Tuchel opts to rotate for this game with the likes of Kai Havertz and N’Golo Kanté potentially dropping out to give others game time. As well as this, it could be the same case for Guardiola, who of course as we know has the ability to do his usual ‘Pep Roulette.’

However, City are still chasing the title and a win for them tomorrow will see them confirmed as Premier League Champions for the fifth time so it will be unknown as to what sort of team they field. Back in January, the Blues had a tough time against Man City in the reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge, losing 3-1 and getting dismantled by De Bruyne, Gundogan and Foden in what was a disastrous result. There is no doubt that Manchester City are the clear favourites heading into this match and are desperate to have the title secured as soon as possible with the Champions League Final on their minds.

Meanwhile, we will be hoping to pick up a positive result to help strengthen our top four hopes but Tuchel will of course take into consideration the Arsenal game on Wednesday as well as the FA Cup Final. With both sides likely to rotate having played in midweek, I do not know how this match will end up but I’m going to say we come away with a draw in this game.

Final Score: Manchester City 1 – 1 Chelsea

Thomas Tuchel has come in and helped galvanised Chelsea's defence, including help Antonio Rudiger rediscover top form. Credit | Ben Stansall/PA
Thomas Tuchel has come in and helped galvanised Chelsea’s defence, including help Antonio Rudiger rediscover top form. Credit | Ben Stansall/PA

Dan (@idanknow05)

As the end of the season approaches, so part two in the Manchester City vs Chelsea saga commences. Part one proved to be a stellar opening as our merry fellowship were able to overcome their nemesis in an all important FA Cup semi-final. Now they must make the journey to Mordor in the hopes of coming away with a positive result. The narrative of this three-part saga is an intriguing one with each clash carrying great importance for both sides. As in a work of detective fiction, the suspense builds with each passing chapter.

Now, City have the chance to win the Premier League title and Chelsea have the chance to cement a top four position. Again, it is two supremely talented teams with high calibre managers on the touchline facing one another. The stakes are high, the margins are fine and the game will be nothing short of fascinating. Many may see this as a prelude to the biggest game in both clubs’ history, in conjunction with Moscow 2008 and Munich 2012 for Chelsea, at the end of May. Given City are such a wonderfully gifted team who seem to get any team in Europe to dance to their tune, this will be a very difficult encounter for Tuchel and his players. The pressure, demands and concentration levels haven’t let up for the Blues at any point in the last month. And, they will only increase in this encounter. So impressive have Chelsea been defensively and ever improving in an attacking sense, it would be tough to see them being blown away by Pep Guardiola’s men. Moreover, it would lay down a worrying omen for the Champions League Final if that were to come to fruition.

As both teams have respective ambitions in the league to achieve and a win would confirm the title for City, it’s difficult to see a clear winner here. Ahead of the match, both sides should make a number of changes as scheduling demands place an ever increasing load on the respective playing staff. One would hope to see Chelsea’s attacking fluidity persist and exciting players like Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech get a chance to start. Similarly, players like Mason Mount, N’Golo Kanté and Cesar Azpilicueta have played virtually every minute recently and may need a bit of a rest, at least in the latter part of the match. The expectation is that this will be a very tight match where the odd goal may decide it, but my feeling is that both teams will be content to see out a stalemate even if they do their best to win the game.

Final Score: Manchester City 1 – 1 Chelsea

Sam (@tabuteauS)

This feels like the dress rehearsal for May 29th. Both sides seem to have one eye on the Champions League, and I don’t expect this game to produce much in the way of entertainment. City have the chance to win the league, and in all honesty I can’t see Chelsea stopping them. Newcastle’s win at Leicester has given Chelsea an opportunity to capitalise, however. The midfield battle will be key to Chelsea’s success, but I can see Jorginho being overrun. It will be a tight game, but I see City winning in the end.

Final Score: Manchester City 2 – 0 Chelsea

Hakim Ziyech scored the winner in the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester City. Will he be as influential? Credit | Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Getty Images
Hakim Ziyech scored the winner in the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester City. Will he be as influential? Credit | Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Getty Images

Travis (@Crossroads_CFC)

The Blues travel to champions-elect Manchester City looking to keep the momentum that was built after the win against Madrid midweek. Both clubs will again meet in the Champions League Final, and it’s likely some rotation is used for both. Equally as probable is that neither squad will be as up for this match as they respectively were for their Champions League semi-finals. Expect a bit of a hangover from both Chelsea and City. Manchester City will likely wrap up the Premier League title this match week which is another reason why it’s hard to imagine a full force opponent playing at their absolute best.

There is also many reasons to expect both managers to hold their tactical cards closer to their chests, as neither will look to show too much in this match prior to the Champions League Final. Expect a bit of a boring match with both teams feeling each other’s style of play out and not pushing too hard for a winner from start to finish.

I expect that Mendy, Azpilicueta, Christensen, and Zouma will start in the backline. I predict the wingbacks will be James and Chilwell, with the center mids being Jorginho and Kante once again. I theorise the front 3 will be Mount, Ziyech, and Werner.

Final Score: Manchester City 1 – 1 Chelsea

Source: http://www.chelseafc.com

Written by Matt, Dan, Sam, Travis and RJ

Edited by RJ Bonaccorsi (@RJ_Goodthings)

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