Premier League leaders Chelsea host high-flying Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on Saturday (at 12:30pm ET on NBC for readers in the USA) with both sides comfortably clear of their nearest rivals.
The Blues’ are seven points above second-placed Arsenal who are not in Premier League action this weekend due to their FA Cup semi-final against Reading, and they could go 10 points clear if they manage a win against the Red Devils.
With Arsenal-Chelsea still to meet on April 26, it is very important that Mourinho’s men do not drop points Saturday because a subsequent loss at the Emirates would totally blow the title race wide open.
On Saturday, they will be facing a resurgent United side who have won four on the bounce including last weekend’s outstanding display and defeat of cross-town rivals Manchester City and are just a point behind Arsenal.
With second place (and possibly even top spot) still up for grabs, you can be sure Louis van Gaal will field his strongest side in this match knowing that a win will take them above Arsenal with both sides still to clash next month.
The major concern for Jose Mourinho is the fitness of his strikers all of whom have various concerns. Diego Costa is definitely out while Loic Remy is also a doubt which could see Didier Drogba – who showed signs of fatigue in the last game – retain his place in the attack.
Other than that, expect the same old Chelsea setup with Thibaut Courtois, John Terry, Cesc Fabregas and Eden Hazard all set to start.
For the visitors, Van Gaal would have stuck to his tried and trusted XI that has worked so well for him in recent weeks. However, Phil Jones, Michael Carrick, Marco Rojo and Daley Blind are all out injured.
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