Chelsea - Manchester City Preview: Blues look to deflate City after midweek triumph

Guus Hiddink's side will be hoping to play spoiler on Saturday and dent Man City's top four hopes.

Chelsea - Manchester City Preview: Blues look to deflate City after midweek triumph
Source: VAVEL UK

While Chelsea's torrid season has been over for a while, Manchester City are still battling to stay in the top four, as well as reaching the Champions League Semi Final.

It's odd to see a battle between two heavyweights in the Premier League have no impact on the title race this late in the season, but here we are.

Team news

Chelsea: Last week's 1-0 loss to Swansea was Guus Hiddink's first Premier League defeat as interim boss this season and despite having nothing to play for, they will be hoping to bounce back on Saturday.

Guus Hiddink ruled out John Terry and Loic Remy due to their injuries while adding that Eden Hazard trained all week and may feature for the first time in a few weeks. Diego Costa returns to the team after serving his suspension, as do Nemanja Matic and Gary Cahill

Projected XI: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Cahill, Ivanovic, Baba Rahman; Mikel, Fabregas; Hazard, Loftus-Cheek, Pedro; Diego Costa.

Manchester City: Manuel Pellegrini's men enjoyed a European triumph in midweek as the reached their first ever Champions League Semi Final. Their attention now turns to Chelsea at the weekend with the goal of moving closer to confirming a spot in the top four. 

David Silva has been ruled out of Saturday's trip to Stamford Bridge with an ankle problem. Captain Vincent Kompany is also set to miss out due to his calf strain but may return for Tuesday's game against Newcastle. Raheem Sterling is also close to a return but is considered a doubt to face Chelsea.

Projected XI: Hart; Sagna, Mangala, Otamendi, Kolarov; Toure, Fernandinho, Fernando; De Bruyne, Navas, Aguero.

A return to form for Diego Costa would be welcomed by all Blues' fans. | Image: Getty Images
A return to form for Diego Costa would be welcomed by all Blues' fans. | Image: Getty Images

Background

Man City will want to end a drought at Stamford Bridge as they have not won at Chelsea's home in six years. That victory came in 2010 as City ran out 4-2 winners.

The last meeting between the two came in the FA Cup back in February with Chelsea beating a largely inexperience City side, 5-1. 

In their last ten meetings in the league, Man City have won just three and drawn three.

Sergio Aguero leads City with 18 goals this season and has helped his side into fourth place. Meanwhile, Diego Costa has bagged 11 for Chelsea this season but it hasn't been enough as the Blues sit in tenth.

Players to watch

Chelsea - Cesc Fabregas: Last week's performance against Swansea was well below par for not just Fabregas, but for the entire team. Before that, Fabregas was arguably Chelsea's best player for the month or two prior and he has been in good form since Hiddink took over back in December. Against a good midfield, Fabregas will need to dictate play as he usually does in order for Chelsea to stand a chance.

Manchester City - Kevin De Bruyne: The Belgian would be many people's pick for signing of the season if not for his lengthy spell on the sidelines. The attacking midfielder was brilliant prior to his injury and has picked up where he left off since returning. The winner in midweek against PSG will only give him more confidence as he prepares to face his former club.