The London club seems to have recovered from its early season slump, and now sits at a decent third, having secured an impressive 4-0 win against Stoke last week.
City, on the other hand, are tied with their Mancunian neighbors at the top, with both clubs having 16 points, but the Sky Blues’ goals difference being the superior of the two. As of such, the outcome of this weekend’s match will certainly cause a paramount difference at the top.
However, Manchester City will go into the encounter with a worrying injury in tow, as Benjamin Mendy travelled to Barcelona earlier this week to have his knee treated upon, after being injured in an otherwise spectacular 5-0 win against Crystal Palace last Saturday.
The newly signed defender has been ruled out for months. As of such, it is crucial for Pep Guardiola to come up with a swift and effective replacement in what is undoubtedly a vital position, both defensively and in attacking prowess, for City.
Against Shakhtar Donetsk, it was Fabian Delph who the manager experimented with at the left-back, and he certainly impressed in the spot, functioning just as his teammates and the boss would have liked him to.
“Fabian Delph was man of the match,” Guardiola said after the game. “When a guy who is so kind and can help the team, he is intelligent, is physical and never loses the ball. He controlled Marlos and did it very well.”
The former Barcelona manager, who spent around £130m on full-backs this summer, could again turn to the former Aston Villa midfielder to fill the left-back spot against Chelsea. It will be interesting to see whether or not such an impending change will aid their fortunes on Saturday.
Written by Naveen Kelvin
A writer trying to craft the poetry within football. Purpose in life is to Make Good Art.