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Chelsea will be away to Manchester City this weekend, and the game promises to be the match of the weekend.
The game at the Etihad Stadium means two different things for the two sides, and memories of a 6-0 thrashing last season at the Etihad still comes fresh in the minds of Chelsea fans.
There are some big decisions Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has to make ahead of this game that could decide how this fixture will go for the Blues.
Chelsea have been brilliant in attack this season and the Blues have been in good form in the Premier League, winning their last six league matches. However, the Blues defence is still susceptible as we’ve seen in games this season. Lampard has been advised to employ a pragmatic approach against the Citizens, and it remains a big decision for the Chelsea manager – whether to shun the attacking football that has served him in recent games or park the bus and try to get a point and avoid another Etihad humiliation.
Another key decision Lampard will be faced with is whether to continue with youngster Reece James who pocketed Wilfried Zaha against Crystal Palace before the international break or continue with the more experienced Cesar Azpilicueta. Of course, Lampard must be looking at the 19-year-old’s performance and will be amazed with what he saw a fortnight ago. While Azpilicueta still remains a force in defence and one of the best one vs one fullbacks, his speed and tenacity are gradually beginning to leave him, while a certain James adds intensity both to Chelsea’s attack and defence, not also forgetting his good crosses. Lampard will most definitely go for the experience of his captain, but this will present another big decision for the Chelsea boss.
One of the biggest decisions Lampard will ponder on is in midfield. Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic have formed a good partnership in central midfield in the absence of N’Golo Kante, but Kante is back now and his hard work will definitely be needed against City. Lampard will be faced with which midfield three to start, and it’s not an easy decision to make.
It’s a big game this weekend, and big games come with big decisions. We’d see how the Chelsea boss handles the pressure of facing Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.