Chelsea v Man City Betting Preview, Odds & Tips | 24/02/19
Football specialist James O’Rourke (@JamesOR1) previews Chelsea v Manchester City and provides us with his best bets for Sunday’s Carabao Cup Final at Wembley Stadium by analysing team news, potential line-ups, head-to-head, key stats and facts and more.
- 2019 Profit & Loss: +2.77pts
Chelsea v Manchester City Betting Preview, Odds & Tips
- Date: 24/02/19
- Time: 16:30
- Venue: Wembley Stadium
- Channel: Sky Sports Main Event
The first major trophy in English football is up for grabs on Sunday afternoon as the 2019 Carabao Cup Final takes centre stage at Wembley Stadium. Chelsea go into the encounter as big underdogs against a Manchester City side that dished out a 6-0 beating to them only a few weeks ago.
It has been a tested period for Chelsea to say the least. Maurizio Sarri is coming under big pressure after his tactics have come into question from supporters. Roma are believed to be sniffing around to take his as their manager for next season. Disappointing away form has also contributed to the pressure on the Italian, but they do remain in the UEFA Europa League. On Friday, it was revealed that the club will be unable to make any new signings over the next two transfer windows. A cup final therefore presents a welcome distraction for the Blues.
Man City have managed to wrestle back top spot in the Premier League from Liverpool thanks to a run of seven wins in their last eight in the league. Since shock back-to-back defeats to Crystal Palace and Leicester in December, City have won 13 out of 14 in all competitions, including the demolition of Chelsea earlier this month. Pep Guardiola’s side have enjoyed a smooth passage into the final of this competition, enjoying a 10-0 aggregate success over League One Burton Albion in the semi-finals.
Chelsea are sweating on the fitness of number one keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga. He did not play on Thursday night in the UEFA Europa League tie at home to Malmo. Maurizio Sarri said he is hopeful of having him available to feature at Wembley, but he clearly is a concern. Veteran Willy Caballero is on standby. Pedro was another missing in the Malmo second leg clash, but he is another the club are hoping to have back for Sunday, along with cover defender Davide Zappacosta. Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Gary Cahill are other worries, whilst Marco van Ginkel remains out long-term. David Luiz, Jorginho, Eden Hazard and Gonzalo Higuain all started Thursday’s game with Malmo on the bench, with an eye on Sunday’s final.
Man City will certainly be without Claudio Bravo, who would probably have started this game if fit considering he is the ‘cup goalkeeper’. It could be that Arijanet Muric plays in goal after impressing in this cup run so far. Ederson however could easily be called given the magnitude of this contest. First choice left back Benjamin Mendy is still on the comeback trail as well. John Stones and Gabriel Jesus sat out the midweek trip to Schalke 04 because of groin and hamstring issues respectively. Pep Guardiola is unsure if the trio to be available. Fabian Delph did not travel either, but should come into contention for this showpiece event.
Potential Chelsea Starting XI: Willy Caballero, Cesar Azpilicueta, David Luiz, Antonio Rüdiger, Marcos Alonso, N’Golo Kante, Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic, Willian, Gonzalo Higuain, Eden Hazard.
Potential Manchester City Starting XI: Arijanet Muric, Kyle Walker, John Stones, Nicolas Otamendi, Aymeric Laporte, Kevin De Bruyne, Fernandinho, David Silva, Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero, Bernando Silva.
Head To Head
- Sunday’s meeting at Wembley will be the fourth official meeting of the season between these two. The pair already met at Wembley back in August for the Charity Shield, which City emerged as 2-0 winners. Chelsea won back that score in the Premier League in December, but the Citizens would be heavy 6-0 winners at the Etihad only a few weeks ago.
- Man City have the edge in recent times in this respective head-to-head battle, winning six of the last ten, with Chelsea coming out on top in the other four. Interestingly, all six of City’s wins within this period have been ‘to nil’.
- Overall head-to-head record: Chelsea 67, Man City 56, Draw 39.
Key Stats & Facts
- Despite both teams packing a wealth of attacking talent, the last five head-to-head between these two would not have seen both teams to score pay out.
- Man City are on an incredible run of 13 wins in their last 14 in all competitions, with the Premier League defeat to Newcastle in January being the only negative in that period. Guardiola’s men have won five in a row, scoring a huge 18 goals in the process.
- Chelsea have not won back-to-back matches in 90 minutes since beating Watford and Crystal Palace over the Christmas period. They have played a further 13 matches since then.
- The blue team in Manchester have won three of the last five Carabao Cup Finals. Chelsea were last victorious in this competition in 2015.
- Guardiola has only lost one of the 11 major cup finals he has contested as a manager in his career. This was in 2011, when Barcelona lost versus Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey. Sarri is still seeking his first big major honour as a manager.
- Chelsea 95/20
- Draw 71/20
- Manchester City 59/100
Almost everything is pointing towards a Manchester City here. It has been deemed inevitable in many quarters. Whilst that is understandable to a degree, I’d be amazed if this was as one-sided as the recent league meeting was. Motivation won’t be low in the Chelsea camp on the back of that, plus this is a final after all. A trophy is on the line and Chelsea won’t want to give up the chance of lifting the silverware without a fight. If Man City turn up, they’ll probably be victorious, but there is something in the back of my mind that doesn’t want to rule out Chelsea so easily.
I’ll therefore look elsewhere for some value. The first being the draw at half time. These cup finals can sometimes be a slow burner, and Chelsea will be wary of making the mistakes they did at the Etihad recently. They were 4-0 down in 25 minutes on that occasion, and I just can’t see history repeating itself, certainly not to that extent. Chelsea are deemed big underdogs, and perhaps that tag might suit them.
I don’t think this’ll be a one-sided affair. Man City may have some issues. We saw certain vulnerabilities to them in the Schalke game, plus they lost at Newcastle late in January. Whilst they are on a roll at the moment, form going into finals is not always the Holy Grail. Chelsea will be up for this, and let’s not forget that they beat City earlier this season as well. I can see Hazard causing a few problems on the break, and City’s enforcer in chief Fernandinho is always looking to deny these type of situations from materialising even further. He makes the most tackles and commits the most fouls in this team, whilst also having the most bookings.