Man City Duo Silva & Toure Can Exploit Chelsea’s Weakness On Sunday
How Manchester City’s midfield duo of Yaya Toure and David Silva will be key in Manuel Pellegrini’s sides chances of beating Chelsea on Sunday.
Manchester City’s first home fixture of the 2015/16 season could not have been trickier than the visit of reigning Premier League champions Chelsea on Sunday. The Eastlands club are off to a good start to the season following their 3-0 win over West Bromwich Albion on Monday night, and as it stands, they sit two points clear of their weekend opponents.
Manuel Pellegrini’s men will look to regain the league title they lost to Chelsea in 2014/15, and with the Blues seemingly embroiled in off-pitch turmoil, things could not have been rosier for the Sky Blues ahead of the Etihad Stadium’s first kick off of the season.
City clinically swept the Baggies aside in their season opener, and most of the credits for the win rightfully went the way of their chief creative tool, David Silva. Silva was in ominous form at the Hawthorns, scoring one and creating another en route to a man of the match performance.
Pellegrini is in a position to start with last season’s league top scorer Sergio Aguero after keeping him on the bench on Monday night, while first choice right-back Pablo Zabaleta is also in contention to make his first start of the season after being rested for the West Brom game.
With Chelsea likely to adopt a cautious approach for what will be an important away game against the league leaders, the Sky Blues will have the onus to take the initiative and the game to the Blues. Pellegrini’s side have a different dynamic from last season with the pace and trickery of summer signing Raheem Sterling on the left.
They are expected to line up in a 4-2-3-1 shape, with the central midfield pairing of Yaya Toure and Fernandinho sitting behind Silva who will look for pockets of space centrally between Chelsea’s lines of midfield and defence. Mourinho’s Chelsea play a deep rear guard, which will aim to nullify the pace of City’s pacey forwards in counter attacks.
Against a deep Chelsea intent on soaking pressure and attacking in transitional phases, Manchester City’s patience will be a virtue. Regaining possession in midfield and getting the ball to Silva is as much a key as creating goalscoring openings for Aguero. While the importance of Toure in bombing forward to link up in attacking moves is another key to breaking what will be a defensively resilient Chelsea unit.
Chelsea, uncharacteristically, conceded twice against Swansea last weekend and afforded space aplenty in midfield to their opponents. Unlikely as it may seem that the Blues will repeat their mistakes for the second consecutive game, Manchester City have an obvious weakness to exploit in the centre of the pitch.
With the blossoming midfield partnership between Toure and Fernandinho, and Silva’s visionary brilliance, Pellegrini’s side could find plenty space in front of a square Chelsea back four to trouble them should they regain the ball in the attacking half by applying intense pressure on the Chelsea midfielders.
City are likely to enjoy more possession than their rivals on Sunday, and in Sterling and Aguero, they have two forwards blessed with pace, trickery and intelligence. Pellegrini’s record reads zero wins so far against Mourinho in the Premier League, and Sunday could be the day the Chilean tactician gets one over the Chelsea manager.
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