To be played on Monday 3rd February 2014 at 20:00. Venue: Etihad Stadium, Manchester.
Last season: 2-0
Preview & injury news
Manchester City went top of the Premier League for the first time since the opening day fixtures after their 5-1 victory against Tottenham Hotspur, making it 11 wins from 12 league games. The momentum is certainly with them and they face the toughest test of their 100% domestic home record this season with Jose Mourinho's Chelsea visiting the Etihad Stadium. Chelsea slipped up in their last match with a 0-0 draw against West Ham United at Stamford Bridge, meaning they fell three points behind City. It prompted a rather amusing exchange between Mourinho and West Ham boss Sam Allardyce over the Hammers tactics. In terms of Chelsea's form, prior to Wednesday's draw they won their last five league games, so they are not in bad form.
On the injury front, Sergio Aguero could be missing for City after he limped off during the win at White Hart Lane on Wednesday night with a hamstring injury, whilst Samir Nasri's knee injury keeps the French midfielder out until March. However, they could welcome back Javi Garcia from a muscle injury, and there's a also a chance that James Milner could return from a groin problem. Alvaro Negredo was struggling with a shoulder injury which is why he didn't feature against Spurs but he could return on Monday night.
Chelsea's only injury headache is Fernando Torres who has a knee problem but could return could return a week later - whilst Marco Van Ginkel is still recovering from a long term knee injury.
Here are the side's top scorers in the league this season
|Sergio Agüero||Man City||FW||15||17||1,199|
|Yaya Touré||Man City||MF||12||22||1,912|
|Álvaro Negredo||Man City||FW||9||21||1,325|
Their average possession statistics:
And the amount of clean sheets they have kept this season
5 players to watch
Edin Dzeko - With no Aguero, and still a doubt of Negredo's fitness, the onus will be on Dzeko to fire them to victory over Chelsea, and he may need to be clinical in front of goal as Chelsea are going to set up to be as solid as possible at the Etihad Stadium.
John Terry - It is going to be a big defensive effort for the visitors and Terry is going to need to demonstrate all of his best qualities. As well as being a top class defender, he is going to need to show how good a leader he is as Chelsea look to end City's 100% home record.
Yaya Toure - When is Toure not a player to watch for City? It will be interesting to see how Chelsea deal with the powerful Ivorian. If the strikers aren't a goal threat in this game, expect Toure to be. It will be hard to keep him quiet.
Ramires - Ramires has some incredible pace and an engine which could be useful when playing City on the counter attack and getting beyond City's midfield duo. It would not be surprising if Ramires carries the ball quite a bit and the Chelsea look to him to do a lot of work in the middle of the park.
Pablo Zabaleta - City do play their full-backs very high up the field and expect Monday night to be no different, it means that Zabaleta will be a big threat going forward. And if Chelsea play on the counter-attack, he is going to have to get up and down the flank pretty quickly.
Earlier on in the season
Chelsea 2-1 Manchester City - October 2013
A defensive mix up cost City dearly at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea snatched all three points right at the death. The home side opened the scoring through Andre Schurrle's close range strike after good work from Fernando Torres on the right flank just after the half hour mark. It was a lead that Chelsea held until half time, as City hit back at the start of the second half through a classy Sergio Aguero strike. The game looked to be heading for a draw when a mix up between Matija Nastasic and Joe Hart - where Nastasic headed the ball past Hart when the keeper came out to claim it - allowed Torres to pounce and score the winner.