Manchester City have thus far been relentless in pursuit of their second successive Premier League title, however, face one of their biggest tests so far as they travel to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea this weekend.
Maurizio Sarri’s men were early title contenders, although have fallen off the pace set by City after a few hiccups in recent weeks – this fixture sees a perfect opportunity for the Blues to show their title credentials, as well as cut the gap on the top two.
Fully fit Blues
Sarri’s team have no real injury issues ahead of this one, with both Jorginho and David Luiz expected to return in time for the matchup.
In his pre-match press conference, the Chelsea boss labelled City as "The best team in Europe" showing that he knows his side will have to be at their best, and having no serious injury concerns will massively boost their chances.
Chelsea predicted XI: Arrizabalaga; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Alonso; Jorginho, Kante, Kovacic; Pedro, Hazard, Morata.
Guardiola missing key components
Whilst Chelsea are fully fit ahead of this one, Pep Guardiola has multiple injury issues.
Both Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero are expected to miss the trip to the bridge - a huge setback for the Citizens.
The City boss has also responded to Sarri’s claims that his side are the best in Europe.
"Thanks but we are not the best. To be the best you have to win the titles."
Guardiola went on to discuss the difficulties that a trip to Stamford Bridge posses, "Always Stamford Bridge is difficult. I have travelled there many times as a manager and won once - last season. Most times I lose there."
City do still have a lot of strength in depth despite missing two of their most valuable players, and with the form they’re on at the moment, they will surely fancy themselves against anyone.
Man City predicted XI: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Delph; Fernandinho, D. Silva, B. Silva; Sané, Sterling, Jesus.
A must win for Chelsea?
Before the season started, many saw Chelsea as ‘outsiders’ for the title.
Sarri’s side started the season brilliantly, with the form of Eden Hazard lighting up the Premier League in the first few weeks.
Since then, Chelsea have been less resilient, with a 2-1 loss to Wolves in the week summing up their lack of consistency.
Chelsea now sit in fourth, 10 points off City, meaning that this game could potentially make or break their season, and what the Stamford Bridge faithful can expect for the rest of the season - a top four race, or an outside chance at the title.
Whatever happens, when these two come head to head, sparks usually fly, with many memorable matchups from down the years.
This mixed with the fact that it is seen by almost everyone as ‘game of the week’ in England, you can expect almost everybody will be tuning in to this one.