A third Premier League (PL) defeat in succession would all but end Manchester United’s interest in the fight for a top-four finish. Led by a manager under scrutiny, the ‘Red Devils’ have returned a paltry record from PL home games against top-six peers to date this season (D2, L2), with both defeats also seeing United fail to score.
Interestingly, six of the seven goals conceded by United in that select sequence of home games arrived in the second half. Their lack of staying power is further evidenced by the fact that (across all venues) United have gone on to lose to-nil in the last three PL matches where they have conceded first.
Chelsea travel to Old Trafford in pole position for a top-four finish. However, there is no end in sight for Chelsea’s awayday woes, with the ‘Blues’ still being without a single point (or even a goal!) this calendar year, from PL matches away to any side currently above the relegation zone.
Those defeats have all come by a margin of multiple goals, although three of the last four PL away matches against such opposition have at least seen Chelsea hold out to go in level at the break. On all three occasions, the first opposition goal arrived within the 15 minutes immediately following the interval.
Players to watch: Paul Pogba has nine PL goals and six assists since Ole Gunnar Solskjær took over as United boss.
Heading the visitors’ attack, Gonzalo Higuaín is the last man to draw first blood for Chelsea in a PL away match.
Stat attack: December 2013 remains the last time United lost successive home PL games ‘to nil’.
Five of the last seven H2H meetings between these teams have produced under 2.5 goals.
Chelsea have scored first in four of their last five clashes with United, yielding a record of: W2, D1, L1, after doing so.
Will not play
(Lower Back Injury)
(Achilles Tendon Injury)
van Ginkel M.
(Lacking Match Fitness)
Referee: Atkinson M. (Eng),
Venue: Old Trafford (Manchester)