The highlight of the football weekend comes at the Etihad as Manchester City welcome Chelsea. Tom Carnduff has two best bets.
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Manchester City v Chelsea (Etihad Stadium, 1600 GMT, Sky Sports Main Event)
City will most likely be back in second as Liverpool have a home tie against Bournemouth on Saturday, but they will be eager for revenge following the 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge back in December.
Goals from N'Golo Kante and David Luiz were the difference that day, in what halted a run of three consecutive victories for City against the Blues.
The home record has been phenomenal for Pep Guardiola's men. The defeat to Crystal Palace was their only loss in their past 16 games at home in all competitions, the other 15 ending in a win.
We should expect a similar outcome here, despite Chelsea's spot in the top-four. Last season's 100-point champions have already beaten the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool in previous months.
This will be a game played with intensity and an emphasis on attack. What that should mean is fouls, and with the referee in charge, we can expect plenty of cards.
That referee is Mike Dean. He's one red card away from a century in the Premier League, having shown a huge total of nine in England's top-flight already during the current campaign.
This seems the type of game where we will see number one hundred with the pace of the game and the teams involved. At a price of 4/1, the value is there on backing someone to overstep the mark.
Score prediction: Manchester City 2-1 Chelsea (Sky Bet odds: 15/2)
We've already discussed City's incredibly strong home record and that trend should continue on Sunday. The title race is hotting up and the game in hand Liverpool possess means they hold the slight advantage. Guardiola knows that he may well have to win every game this season in order to retain the title. His side have enough about them to beat this Chelsea side and make right their performance at Stamford Bridge.
Best bet: A red card to be shown at 22/5
As stated above, the refereeing appointment makes this one good value. Not only does his red cards this season stand out, but so too does his previous history with these two sides. Dean has shown more red cards to Manchester City and Chelsea than any other Premier League side. He showed a red card in the last City game he covered, a 2-1 defeat to Leicester, while there were seven yellows in Chelsea's 2-2 draw with Manchester United.
Best bet: A penalty to be awarded at 5/2
Not only do City and Chelsea sit high in Dean's card rankings, but they're also in the top three for penalties awarded. Only Manchester United can boast more by the Premier League stalwart, and that could mean we see one given here. With City expected to be on the front foot throughout and wingers with pace, there's always a chance that someone will be brought down as they look to break into the box. On the flip side, a counter attack has seen City concede penalties this season, the same could be applied to Chelsea.
- Man City have lost three of their last five Premier League matches against Chelsea (W2), scoring just four goals and never more than once in this run.
- Chelsea have won on just two of their last nine visits to the Etihad in the Premier League (D1 L6), winning 1-0 in February 2014 and 3-1 in December 2016.
- Chelsea, who won the reverse fixture this season, have done the double over Man City on 10 previous occasions in the Premier League; the most a side has done so vs City in the competition.
- Chelsea are winless in their last six Premier League away games against ‘big six’ opposition (D2 L4), losing the last four in a row.
- Manchester City have scored at least twice in each of their last 14 Premier League home games, winning 13 of those (L1). If they score twice here, they’ll set a new competition record for scoring more than once in consecutive home games.
- Chelsea are unbeaten in seven league games against reigning Premier League champions (W4 D3), winning each of the last three in a row. Only two teams have ever won four consecutive games against reigning champions – Liverpool (4 between 2000 and 2002) and Manchester City (6 between 2011 and 2016).
- Chelsea have lost their last two Premier League away games by an aggregate score of 0-6. They last lost three in a row on the road while failing to score in the top-flight back in December 1991 (a run of four).
- Man City boss Pep Guardiola has lost more league games against Chelsea than he has versus any other team in his managerial career (3).
- Man City striker Sergio Aguero has scored five goals in his last five Premier League appearances versus Chelsea, including netting a hat-trick in April 2016.
- Chelsea’s Eden Hazard has had a hand in five goals in his last five games against Man City in the Premier League (3 goals, 2 assists), with the Belgian assisting both of the Blues’ goals in the reverse fixture this term.
- Sergio Aguero has scored 11 goals in 11 home Premier League games for Manchester City this season, including two hat-tricks. He’s the highest scoring home player in the competition so far this season.
- 50% of N’Golo Kante’s Premier League assists for Chelsea this season have been for Gonzalo Higuain (2/4), despite the pair playing just 148 minutes together.