Chelsea vs. Manchester United: 4 Things to Look for at Stamford Bridge
Manchester United head to Stamford Bridge this weekend in an English Premier League showdown. What can we expect from this titanic tussle?
Sir Alex Ferguson and Roberto Di Matteo enjoyed vastly different midweek encounters against European competitors, so how will both teams react on the back of their respective performances?
Read on to find four things you need to look for whilst viewing this game.
Firstly, they were massively guilty of underestimating an absolutely brilliant Hirnyky side at the Donbass Arena, coming out second best in what was surely an eye-opening experience for Roberto Di Matteo.
Second, it was their first loss since that calamitous affair in France, when Radamel Falcao single-handedly destroyed a wretched Blues team.
Aside from these freak results, Chelsea have been immense all season. It's always worth watching to see how a team reacts to a setback when they remain few and far between.
Is It a Diamond?
Sir Alex Ferguson has been tinkering with his side's formation this season, which is great to see.
He went with a midfield diamond against Newcastle United at St. James' Park, which worked wonders. However, he tried the same system against Braga in the UEFA Champions League only to obtain adverse results.
Many have claimed the narrow diamond can only be beneficial to the Red Devils away from home.
With this game at Stamford Bridge, will we see it?
Who Starts Up Top for United?
Not only did the game against Braga throw the midfield diamond formation into question, it also gave Sir Alex Ferguson a striking dilemma.
The Scot discussed the situation following Javier Hernandez's two-goal performance in midweek (via The Mirror):
He trains magnificently, he's improving all the time and he's got such great enthusiasm for the game—he's got me thinking. With him, (Robin) Van Persie, (Wayne) Rooney, (Danny) Welbeck... I don't know what you do with them, to be honest.
Who should start up front for United?
Will Chelsea Rotate?
Many Chelsea fans have identified Roberto Di Matteo's lack of squad rotation, despite the sheer size of his roster, as a concern.
The likes of Cesar Azpilicueta and Marko Marin have only been given a chance to shine in meaningless cup games, while Di Matteo's authorised and preferred starting XI have been battling it out every week in both league and European games.
The trip to Ukraine is not a short one, so there will certainly be some tired legs. Will the Italian tactician switch things up for the visit of Manchester United?