Manchester City welcome Chelsea to the Etihad Stadium in Sunday’s bumper showdown knowing victory will see them crowned Premier League champions for the third year running.
The Cityzens sent a daunting message to this weekend’s visitors after thrashing European champions Real Madrid 5-1 on aggregate to book a place in the Champions League final.
Having set up a date with Inter Milan for European football’s holy grail in Istanbul, Man City return to domestic action looking to claim the first of a possible three-peat this season.
Guardiola’s side are foreign to the concept of defeat, which makes them overwhelming favourites in the weekend clash against a struggling Chelsea side.
Frank Lampard’s side were held to a 2-2 draw by Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge last weekend, ending their hopes of finishing in the top half of the Premier League table.
The Blues will hope to get one over the Cityzens, having already lost three times against Guardiola’s side this season, including a 1-0 defeat in the reverse fixture at the Briack in January.
Having beaten Chelsea three times already, Man City could be the first team to record victory over the Blues four times in a row in a single season since Manchester United in the 2010/11 campaign.
The Cityzens have won their final league game on home turf in eight of the last nine seasons (D1), but not since the 2012/13 campaign when they lost against Norwich have they suffered any such defeats.
Riyad Mahrez will be looking to continue his excellent record against Chelsea this season, having scored four goals in three games against the Blues, opening the scoring in each match.
He could be the first Man City player to score four times against an opponent in a single season after Dennis Tueart against Norwich City in the 1975/76 campaign.
Lampard’s Chelsea have struggled for results, but on the bright side, their goalscoring form has improved in recent games, having notched six goals across their last three matches (W1, D1, L1).
However, their appalling record against the reigning champions does little to suggest they could stall Man City’s title party at the weekend.
Chelsea have lost their last five meetings with Man City in all competitions without scoring a single goal since thwarting the Cityzens in the 2021 Champions League final.
Since the start of last season, Chelsea have won none of their 14 league games against sides starting the day above them in the table (D4, L10), losing each of their last three.
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Manchester City vs Chelsea Potential Line-ups
Manchester City (3-2-4-1): Ederson; Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias, Manuel Akanji; John Stones, Rodri; Riyad Mahrez, Kevin De Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan, Jack Grealish; Erling Braut Haaland.
Chelsea (4-3-3): Kepa Arrizabalaga; Trevoh Chalobah, Thiago Silva, Benoit Badiashile, Lewis Hall; Mateo Kovacic, Enzo Fernandez, Conor Gallagher; Joao Felix, Raheem Sterling, Kai Havertz.
We Say: Manchester City 4-0 Chelsea
With the finish line in sight, the rampant league leaders are not expected to pump the breaks, especially against a side merely playing for pride with the campaign approaching its climax.
Man City have never beaten Chelsea four times in a row in a single season, but nothing is stopping them from dispatching Lampard’s out-of-sorts Blues at the weekend.
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