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Manchester City vs Chelsea: Preview, Odds and Betting Tips - 17/02/2024 (Premier League)

On Saturday 17 February 2024, Manchester City vs Chelsea will kick off at 5:30 PM GMT in a match that could affect both their seasons.

The Cityzens and the Blues are having two different campaigns. City have led the league, fallen below the top four and are back in the title race. Chelsea, on the other hand, continue to hover in mid-table and are in danger of falling to 13th if they fail to get good results in their next few games. One of those games is their 17 February clash with City, who are only two points away from the top of the league.

Liverpool are threatening to snatch the title from under Pep Guardiola's nose and as such, the Spanish tactician has awoken the grittiness that fans have come to expect from City when the league is heating up. This form will greatly worry Mauricio Pochettino, whose role is currently being evaluated by the administration of the West London club.

Chelsea face a potential points deduction if they were to fire Pochettino at this point in the season because of the financial implications of such a decision. However, a loss to City could be the straw that breaks the camel's back and forces the club to take the risk.

Both managers want to win badly but the Argentine wants it more. His legacy in management is taking a hit thanks to his struggles at Paris Saint-Germain and now, Chelsea. He made the world sit up while he was at Tottenham Hotspur despite not winning anything but now, he looks out of his depth.

The Chelsea players also want it more, especially Raheem Sterling and Cole Palmer, who will be facing their old clubs once again. Their decision to move on from the winning environment of City to challenge themselves has not paid off on a team level for either of them.

Sterling is also suffering some personal consequences as he has been dropped indefinitely from the England Three Lions squad since making the move to West London. With the UEFA European Championship approaching, the former Liverpool wonder kid has limited chances to win his way back into Gareth Southgate’s squad.

The match is going to be full of drama and passion. Form could end up being cast aside, but for the sake of making great betting decisions, let us take a look at their form guides which will help predict how they will fare against each other.

Form Guide: Manchester City

Manchester City are unbeaten in their last eight Premier League matches (7W, 1D). In all competitions, their last defeat came all the way in December, against Unai Emery’s Aston Villa. Their sole Premier League draw is also their only draw in all competitions since their loss to Villa.

Attacking wise, they have created and finished the most chances among English clubs. They have conceded a lot in that window, however, thanks to them throwing caution to the wind in order to focus on their attack for the purpose of winning games.

Chelsea, their opponents, have not won a game against them in seven meetings, with their last defeat by the Blues coming in 2021 during the UEFA Champions League final of the 2020/21 season.

City will be in action in midweek when the knockouts of the Champions League begin. This could count against them when Chelsea, who will be better rested, come knocking.

Form Guide: Chelsea

Chelsea's form is inconsistent in the league and the evidence is in their league position. They have a much better record from their last five league matches, however.

They have also improved their attacking numbers in that time, which has helped their goal difference to improve. Defensive lapses and errors in concentration continue to haunt them, however, which makes their meeting with Manchester City at this stage of the competition a difficult task to navigate.

Coupled with the fact that they are winless in seven games against the defending champions, things may not go well for Pochettino's side on 17 February.

They can draw inspiration from their last outing against the Cityzens, which ended a six-game losing streak. They matched Guardiola's side in attack, creating and finishing just enough chances to snatch a point from the jaws of defeat.

They will also be well rested ahead of the match, thanks to City playing in the Champions League in midweek.

What to expect from the match

Their last clash was a classic by all standards. Goals, skills, brazen attacks, comebacks and lots of drama characterised the fixture that set City back a little in their title defence. We expect a similar situation when the Blues travel to the Etihad to make an attempt for three important points.

This means the game will be played in the middle of the park with both teams looking to push forward often.

A lot will rest on the shoulders of Kevin De Bruyne for City and Cole Palmer for Chelsea. The former Manchester City man is having a great personal season despite Chelsea's struggles. He is sure to be involved in any attacks that the Blues muster.

Haaland will be one to watch as he continues his Golden Boot defence since returning from injury.

Both teams will line up similarly but in Chelsea's case, they will focus their attacking buildup from the back thanks to their defenders’ ball playing ability.

Betting predictions

Over 2.5 goals

Last time both teams met in the Premier League, they delivered a classic match. The final scoreline of that meeting was 4 - 4, with Pochettino's side matching Guardiola's side in attack. That match is an outlier, though, because the recent history between both sides does not support this scoreline, making it a risky bet. Outside their 4 - 4 draw last November and Man City demolishing Chelsea 4 - 0 in the FA Cup in January 2023, they have played under 2.5 goals. However, both teams have also finished matches against other competitions in recent times with a similar total number of goals. That form is enough evidence to stake on a goals total of over 2.5

William Hill is offering 1.80 odds for at least three goals to be scored.

Manchester City win or draw

The Cityzens are in that mood once again. Every Premier League team dreads facing them during this period, including Chelsea, who will be making the trip to Etihad for this tie. With the final day of the season drawing closer and the prospect of winning four-straight Premier League matches becoming clearer, Guardiola's team will be doing all they can to put the Blues to the sword. What's more, the squad is back to full strength with the injured players officially reintegrated and making goal contributions.

William Hill is offering 1.40 odds for City to avoid defeat.

Anytime scorer – Erling Haaland

Erling Haaland returned to action three weeks ago and took his time to get back in the groove. Against Everton, he scored two late goals to put the rest of the Premier League on check. Those goals took his total for the season to 16, keeping him ahead of the curve. Haaland also has a good record against Chelsea. He has two goals and two assists, having faced them thrice in all competitions. There is no better moment for the Norwegian striker to announce his presence in the league once again than against a traditional big six side.

All odds are via William Hill and all info valid as of the time of writing.

Odds could differ now.


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