Chelsea FC Starting XI Prediction at Manchester City

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With both Ben Chilwell and Reece James out long term, Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is short at wing-back right now. In this the year of the wing-back, it’s the wrong time to be in such a state, especially considering what’s up next- a visit to Manchester City.

This is simply do or die for the Blues, who are fresh off a midweek semifinal win in the Moose Cup over London rivals Tottenham.

Having advanced to the EFL Cup tournament final, they’ll look to try and keep their slim Premier League title hopes alive on Saturday in what is the PL’s first and most prominent fixture this weekend.

Chelsea FC at Manchester City FYIs

Kickoff: Sat Jan 15, 12:30, City of Manchester Stadium

Team News:  Man City   Chelsea

Starting XI Predictions:   Man City     Chelsea

Premier League Pod:  go here

Premier League Position:   Man City 1st, 53 pts    Chelsea 2nd, 43 pts

Premier League Form Guide:   Man City WWWWW     Chelsea DDWDD

In looking at the potential line-up for Tuchel’s side here, you can slot in the wing backs most easily. Due to injuries, Cesar Azpilicueta will line up on the right and Marcos Alonso on the left almost certainly.

The German heralded the versatility of Christian Pulisic, in the run up to the League Cup, so expect him to feature somewhere here, especially after having sit out that win yesterday. We predict Tuchel will stick with a 4-2-2-2, after switching to that formation, from a 3-4-3 on Wednesday night.

Chelsea FC Starting XI Prediction at Manchester City

Kepa; Alonso, Silva, Rudiger, Azpilicueta; Loftus-Cheek, Kante; Mount, Ziyech; Pulisic, Lukaku

Prediction: Man City 0, Chelsea 0

This is something we’ve seen the past couple years, PL blockbuster fixtures ending pedestrian, if not pragmatic. It hasn’t happened in awhile though so we feel it’s due.

Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”

He has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and co-hosts the After Extra Time podcastFollow him on Twitter and Instagram

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