Chelsea have the arduous task of beating Manchester City on Sunday at the Etihad Stadium.
The Blues won the reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge 2-0, and Maurizio Sarri will be hoping his side can claim another victory.
City currently top the table on goal difference having played one more game than Liverpool, and Pep Guardiola will be aiming for a win to keep up pace with Liverpool.
For Chelsea and Maurizio Sarri, a win will be the best bet to maintain our position in fourth, with Manchester United and Arsenal chasing down Chelsea’s neck, especially United who’ve cut a gap of 11 points to just two points.
How can Chelsea beat a strong Manchester City side at the Etihad on Sunday? Antonio Rudiger and Maurizio Sarri have two different concepts to getting the three points.
In an interview published by German magazine Kicker on Thursday, Rudiger revealed that Chelsea must be willing to be dirty to win the game as he emphasised the need for a strong defence.
Rudiger said: “For a long time, Chelsea had a defensive approach. And you can’t get used to something new overnight. Pep Guardiola’s first year wasn’t all that smooth as well.
“We have been there when it mattered. We were the first team to beat Manchester City after all. We must be tougher.
“By now, we have a lot of possession, but we need to get something dirty back in our game.”
For Sarri, Chelsea need to be very fast when we recover the ball because Manchester City press really well after losing the first ball.
“We need to be very fast when we are able to recover the ball, because the first lost ball they are able to press really, really very well so it’s very difficult to exit that situation,” Sarri said.
“If we will be able to do it, I think we can find spaces. But it is very difficult.”
Sarri points to a strong defence as the reason why Chelsea defeated Manchester City 2-0 at Stamford Bridge back in December.
Sarri said: “I think in that match we defended really very well, because they had only three goal opportunities, no more.”