Chelsea vs. Manchester United: 5 Things We Expect To See
When Chelsea host Manchester United in perhaps the biggest match of the season, a lot of fireworks are expected.
Manchester United, who currently lead the league, being three points ahead of Chelsea, will be on the look out to increase the gap with a win or at least a draw. Chelsea, presently ranked fourth after a poor performance over the month, will be looking to revive their season and get back on track for defending their title with nothing but a win.
The match might well be the title-deciding match as an United win will make Fergie's boys the favourites to win the Premier League, while a Chelsea win will make the race wide open again.
In the following slides we will look into the five possible things we can expect to see when the Red Devils' face the Blues at Stamford Bridge this Sunday.
Plenty of Booing for Sir Alex
Sir Alex has started his mind games before the crucial match.
This week he had stated that Chelsea were suffering due to their young team. His earlier taunts at Chelsea will not be greeted with cheers. Rather Ferguson might get a lot of jeering when he arrives at Stamford Bridge.
If the Red Devils lose the match, then more heightened jeering, along with abuses might be the order of the day. The environment will be heated and a lot of noise is going to be made.
A Fair Amount of Bookings
A Chelsea vs. Manchester United match has always attracted considerable amount of heated exchanges, as well as quite a number of bookings.
There have always been instances of hostile exchanges among players of both the clubs. Hence, a match between the top title rivals of the Premier League undoubtedly results in a heated environment both on the pitch and off it.
These time also does not seem to be any different. It is a very crucial match for either team and tensions will be running high. So a handful of bookings will not be very surprising, if not any marching orders.
A Brilliant Goal
Last season Chelsea had defeated Manchester United by a solitary goal, and it was courtesy of an awesome goal from ex-Chelsea man Joe Cole.
With England's top two teams facing off in perhaps the most important match of the season, a breathtaking goal might decide the match. This Sunday, too, the match might be decided by an awesome goal. Be it Drogba or Rooney, Malouda or Nani, a magnificent goal of immense skill might get scored.
It remains to be seen, though, who scores the goal and how it affects the outcome of the game.
A Poor Refereeing Decision
No big game in the Premier League ends without controversy, the most common being erroneous refereeing decisions that affect the results of such big games.
In the past, numerous instances of poor refereeing have been seen. The decisions have also affected the outcome of the matches as well as attracted severe criticism.
The referee in the crunch clash at Stamford Bridge will be Martin Atkinson, who has been severely charged for several erroneous decisions. Another couple of such wrong decisions will attract more flak and anger.
Entrusted with refereeing a match of such high importance, the referee will no doubt be under immense pressure and this might result in one or two wrong decisions. His assistants, too, will have to hear taunts and abuses from the crowd if they make a wrong decision or award something not in favour of the fans.
So chances of some mistakes are there. What remains to be seen, though, is how well the match is controlled by the referee and the number of correct judgements made.
A Memorable Comeback by Lampard
Chelsea have been boosted with the arrival of Frank Lampard into the squad.
The Chelsea midfielder made his comeback, after being on the sidelines for three and a half months, during last week's match against Tottenham.
He has been training with the team and will be starting the match at Stamford Bridge this weekend. Though he was sidelined for a considerable amount of time, his surprise comeback will be a welcome boost for the Blues.
The England international will be looking to make a strong comeback and a match-winning performance might be in the offing. The talented midfield dynamo is known for his passion and ability to rise from the ashes. The match against Manchester United will be the perfect platform for him to prove his comeback.
A brilliant Lampard might be Chelsea's season saviour, and with a match-winning performance, he may guarantee his club's way back into the title race.