Chelsea travel to Manchester City this Sunday knowing they’ll have to beat arguably the best side in Europe to avoid another blow to their Champions League qualification hopes after losing on the other side of Manchester, against United, last weekend.
The Citizens, meanwhile, will hope to sustain the immaculate form they produced against Arsenal on Thursday night, three world-class goals sealing the result before half-time.
Very different objectives for both teams this weekend then, but in the context of Premier League history Chelsea and City are something of kindred spirits; both clubs were fast-tracked from upper-mid table to the top of the division by ludicrously rich owners, both clubs have often been criticised for that spending, both clubs have won two of the last six titles and both clubs have failed to successfully defend the crown in the seasons after.
So, with that in mind, can history tell us anything about what to expect from Sunday’s encounter? Here’s the complete history of Manchester City vs Chelsea in the Premier League…
Traditionally speaking, Chelsea have always dominated this fixture in the Premier League, claiming 14 more wins, keeping ten more clean sheets and scoring 27 more goals than Manchester City. In fact, between 1994 and 2009, there were only actually three occasions in which City didn’t lose to Chelsea in the top flight.
But since then, the power has balanced out in this fixture, or arguably even swung City’s way. From 2009 onwards, City have won eight of 17 meetings, whereas Chelsea have managed just six victories – only two of which were at the Etihad Stadium.
What will perhaps please – or concern – both managers though, is that just seven of 41 Premier League meetings between City and Chelsea have ended as draws. However, three of those have come in the last eleven games.
One of the seminal moments in City’s history came in west London.
Roberto Mancini’s City travelled to Chelsea in 2010 where the game was overshadowed by John Terry’s refusal to shake Wayne Bridge’s hand before the game. But it was a huge moment for City: they beat Chelsea 4-2, winning a game which won’t be remembered as the moment City announced themselves thanks to non-footballing trivia, but it certainly should go down as a big game in the club’s history. Goals from Carlos Tevez and Craig Bellamy won the game for City, and the next season they’d finish third and win the FA Cup.
Given Chelsea’s dominance over City in this fixture and the fact he played for both clubs, perhaps its not surprising that it’s a Chelsea legend who comes out as top scorer. Frank Lampard terrorised plenty of Premier League defences over the course of his career, so it should be expected that his late runs into the box caused problems for City over the years, too. For Chelsea, he netted seven times in 20 games against the Citizens and also grabbed a hat-trick of assists in a 6-0 win during 2007/08 season. Two outings against Chelsea during his season at the Etihad Stadium, meanwhile, produced one goal in a twelve-minute cameo from the bench.
Frank Lampard’s short stay at City doesn’t qualify him for hero status at the Manchester club, even if City fans did appreciate what he brought to the team for a season.
Instead, the shared hero both City and Chelsea fans have an affection for is Nicolas Anelka. The Frenchman played for both clubs, spending two and a half years in Manchester and scoring prolifically, managing 45 goals in all competitions, and almost single-handedly keeping City in the Premier League with goals in a struggling side.
At Chelsea, Anelka played in a much different team, but scored just as consistently. In his first full season at the club, 2008/09, he bagged 25 goals in all competitions, his best tally ever as the Blues won the FA Cup. They repeated the feat the followng season, and added the Premier League title too, with Anelka playing a vital role.
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