Manchester United vs. Chelsea - Opposition Preview
After an impressive outing against PSG in the Champions League, Manchester United are looking ahead at their weekend fixture against Frank Lampard's Chelsea. They currently sit 8th on the table playing one more game than United.
The blues are coming off a draw against Sevilla on the back of dropping points in the premier league against Southampton last weekend. So let's take a look at what United will be up against this weekend.
A potent attack
After splurging close to $200 million in the summer window on just attacking players, Chelsea currently has one of the stronger front lines in the country. Though their current goals tally (13 goals in 5 games) doesn't look like menacing, the talent in their forwards can cause damage on any given day.
Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, Christian Pulisic, Hakim Zieycch, and Mason Mount are some of the forwards that Chelsea can line up with. That attack can cause any defence problems, especially an inconsistent one like United's.
United's defence will have their work cut-out in this game. With Werner coming off a brace in his previous outing in the league, he will be high on confidence and looking to make an impression.
Going back to last season, Chelsea has struggled at the back for quite some time now. Bringing in the likes of Chilwell, Mendy, and Thiago Silva was a direct answer to that problem. But so far, the blues have still looked vulnerable at the back, conceding 9 goals in the league in 5 games. Although a lot of that has been due to Kepa being in goal. Southampton showed last weekend that Chelsea can be gotten at successfully.
Despite some weaknesses in their backline, Chelsea has fullbacks who can cause trouble in the opposition box. Chilwell and Azpilicueta both can put the ball into the box and will be a threat from the flanks.
How can United beat Chelsea?
Given Chelsea's strengths and weaknesses, they will be tough opposition for United at the weekend. United beat Chelsea thrice last season and lost the FA cup semi-finals where Ole didn't field his strongest eleven. A 3-1 record for the Norweigian against Lampard should give the red devils great confidence. Despite that, this is a new season and Chelsea possesses a lot of talent in their squad.
We've spoken about Chelsea's attacking threats and defensive fragilities, but it is likely that the midfield is where this game will be decided. United will have to win the battle in the middle of the park in order to have any success against this Chelsea team.
That would include controlling the ball better than Jorginho and Kante along with keeping Havertz's impact on the game to a minimal. United's midfield probably has the most depth and quality in any department for the team and with the right tactics, they will have a big say in how this game pans out.
United will need a solid performance from everyone on the pitch on Saturday. A lot of the downfall caused this season has been down to individual errors and that cannot be repeated on the weekend. Ole's men will be high on confidence on the back of Paris and now have the opportunity to build on that performance against Chelsea.