Graeme Le Saux is expecting a tight encounter at Stamford Bridge on Sunday with the spoils likely to be shared...
"Antonio Conte has said that they're lacking "hunger and trust" and in turn are making "uncharacteristic individual mistakes". He's not wrong."
Chelsea v Manchester United
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This is a difficult game to predict as both teams are currently under the spotlight for different reasons. Firstly Chelsea are going through a really frustrating spell at the moment, some of the things that made them champions last season are missing and that must be tough for the manager.
Antonio Conte has said that they're lacking "hunger and trust" and in turn are making "uncharacteristic individual mistakes". He's not wrong.
Matic not being there and Kante being out is proving to be a real issue for them and while Fabregas offers a lot in possession he doesn't give you that reliability defensively. David Luiz has made some poor mistakes in recent weeks and even 'Mr. Reliable' Cesar Azpilicueta has been caught in possession on a few occasions.
When you overlay the constant rumours around the future of the manager with these errors, it all adds up to a complicated environment. And so no matter what the result may be on Sunday, a performance of the highest level is absolutely vital to show that the fire still burns.
For Manchester United, they'll always be under the microscope, part of that is down to the size of the club and the other down to the attention and controversy that Jose Mourinho attracts.
I could almost see them replicating the way they set up against Spurs in this game; similar to when Jose - while at Chelsea - went to Old Trafford and played without a striker - he still got a result!
Despite Chelsea's current woes, I don't expect him to throw everything at them. He won't be dictated to by the media, he'll simply focus on what he wants to get out of the game. I suspect he'll look to keep things tight man-for-man and then exploit them on the break as the game grows.
I'm ever the optimist when it comes to football but I'm not sure we're going to get much entertainment on Sunday at Stamford Bridge. United are tending to grind results out at the moment which is obviously important but it's in stark contrast to some of their performances from earlier in the season.
Back 1-1 in Man Utd v Chelsea @ [7.0]