Manchester City are looking to close the gap on the Premier League leaders as they travel to west London in what will be the first of two meetings with Chelsea in less than a week. Ahead of their meeting in the FA Cup third round at the Etihad Stadium comes a top-flight matchup on Thurday where a great deal is at stake for both sides.
City can close the gap on top-of-the-table Arsenal to five points with a win at Stamford Bridge, a result that would bring pressure on Chelsea boss Graham Potter, whose side have won just one of their last seven in the Premier League. Missing out on Champions League qualification looks to be a real risk for the Blues, they will need to pick up results swiftly. Here is how you can watch the match and what you need to know:
- Date: Thursday, Jan. 5 | Time: 3 p.m. ET
- Location: Stamford Bridge, London
- TV/Live stream: Peacock Premium
- Odds: Chelsea +450; Draw +290; Manchester City -163 (via Caesars Sportsbook)
Featured Game | Chelsea vs. Manchester City
Chelsea: As their recruitment department pushes ahead with deals for Benoit Badiashile and Enzo Fernandez there is a more immediate issues for Potter to address, the absence of Reece James with the injury that he picked up in the win over Bournemouth. Without their right back, Chelsea looked devoid of ideas and control as they were held to a draw by Nottingham Forest. With James in the side they average 2.09 points per game, without him just 1.25.
Their injury challenges do not end there, though Chelsea fans would have delighted to see James posing alongside N’Golo Kante on Instagram with the caption “on the mend”. The Frenchman’s dynamism will certainly be missed in midfield against City, where Potter will have to find someone who can match Kevin De Bruyne stride for stride.
Manchester City: A 1-1 draw with Everton was a frustrating check on momentum for City though Pep Guardiola has welcomed World Cup winner Julian Alvarez back to his squad. The Argentine has already proven to be a valuable Robin to an elite level Batman, after excelling alongside Lionel Messi can he do similar with Erling Haaland?
City might have wobbled of late but Chelsea are in far worse form and have consistently failed to get results against Big Six rivals. Expect that run to continue. Pick: Manchester City 2, Chelsea 0.