In the much anticipated clash of potential champions this Sunday, fans will be watching to see who wins what is essentially a heavy weight battle. Another attraction with fans is usually the individual battles between star players of the opposing teams.
In this article, we will highlight these key battles to further give the fans a clue of what they should expect;
- HAZARD VS ZABALETA
In a battle that is always interesting to keep an eye on, the Argentine has done surprising well against the tricky winger in past meetings. The assumption was that the right back would be vulnerable to Hazard’s lightening speed and quick feet. However, Zabaleta’s excellent defensive positioning has been crucial in keeping the 23 year old at bay in the match ups between he two players so far.
Whoever wins this confrontation, will go a long way in enhancing his team’s chances in this tie. Zabaleta will have to close down the Belgian as soon as he gets the ball and always has to ensure that he shows the former Lille man down the outside, towards the corner flag, in other to stop him from cutting in and taking shots at Joe Hart’s goal.
- RAMIRES VS SILVA
The slippery Spaniard David Silva is known for gliding around the center of the pitch, while holding to the ball as long as he needs to, in other to deliver the telling final ball to his team’s strikers. The Brazilian is perfect for the job as he possesses the stamina and work rate needed to properly track the Spanish international.
- MATIC VS. YAYA TOURE
The Ivorian Toure, has been sub par in the first couple of matches this season. The Chelsea and Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic will be hoping that he doesn’t play at his best on Sunday.
The ex Barcelona man on his day, can be the biggest power house in football and Chelsea will need to use Matic in a role just in front of the defense, which ensures that when Toure breaks through from his double pivot position, the only man that can match his strength on the pitch is available to deal with the damage.
- COSTA VS. KOMPANY
Manchester City’s captain Vincent Kompany will lead his team against the Blues on Sunday. He however has to be careful, as he is coming up against the most in form striker in the league. Although the Belgian’s reading of the game is exceptional, he is more likely to be dribbled past by a slightly skillful player.
Also prevalent in his style is the compulsion to cover up for his fellow defenders, which usually leaves him open to uncomfortable situations. The Man. City captain has to make sure he is a 100 percent focused on Diego Costa and not on how well his defensive partners are faring.
- NASRI VS. IVANOVIC
Ivanovic has two goals and one assist this season, showing how much of an attacking force he can be, when given the license to roam. He should however be wary of the Manchester city left winger Sami Nasri, who will seize any gap left by the Serbian and won’t hesitate to expose John Terry’s lack of pace. It will be interesting to see how the Chelsea Right back can balance his attacking and defensive duties tomorrow.
It is clear that individual confrontations will be a key factor in deciding which team carries the day. Whatever the outcome, we are in for an intriguing match.