Man Utd visit the Bridge twice in one week

25/10/2012 no comments »
Man Utd visit the Bridge twice in one week

When the fixture list is released ahead of the new season, every Chelsea fan looks out for the visit of Manchester United – and, just like London buses, you wait for one to come along…

The Blues welcome the Red Devils to Stamford Bridge for a Premier League fixture on Sunday before hosting Sir Alex Ferguson’s men again three days later in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup, for which hospitality packages are still available.

If the last game between the sides is anything to go by then we’re in for a cracker, as a 3-3 draw was played out in west London back in February. Although there was disappointment at losing a three-goal lead, Chelsea have not lost to United at home in the Premier League since 2002 – and we sealed the title against the Red Devils in 2006 with a thumping 3-0 victory.

Mickey Thomas was a fans’ favourite at both clubs during his playing career in the ’70s and ’80s, and although the former winger wouldn’t predict a winner for either game, he was certain of one thing – there will be goals galore.

“There will be goals in this one, there’s absolutely no danger of that,” he told us. “I was lucky enough to play for both of these great clubs and I’m so excited at the prospect of seeing them go head-to head twice in a week.

“A win or defeat at the weekend isn’t going to be critical for the title race at this stage of the season. I’m not just saying this to be nice, but it’s going to take something special to keep either of these sides out of the top two. Chelsea have got the lead, though, so it will be interesting to see how they handle that.”

Derby delight

Chelsea made it two wins from two London derbies so far this season after coming out on top in a 4-2 thriller against Tottenham Hotspur. Much had been made before kick off of the fact that the Blues hadn’t beaten our rivals in the league at White Hart Lane since 2005, but that statistic was consigned to the history books, thanks in part to a stand-out performance from Juan Mata.

We dominated the first half and took a deserved lead through a thunderous Gary Cahill volley, but Spurs came out sharper for the second half and turned the match on its head with goals by William Gallas and Jermain Defoe.

Chelsea were far from finished, though, as Mata scored twice in three minutes – the second coming from an exquisite pass by Eden Hazard – before Daniel Sturridge put the icing on the cake in stoppage time on his return from injury as a substitute.

There was also a trip to Ukraine to face Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League, at their notoriously tough Donbass Arena. A difficult night soon got even harder when the home side took an early lead through Alex Teixeira and Frank Lampard, becoming the first person to play 100 European games for Chelsea, was forced off with an injury after 17 minutes.

Shakhtar got a second with Fernandinho in the second half, meaning Oscar’s late strike couldn’t prevent a 2-1 defeat, but the Blues remain on track to qualify for the knockout stages in second place in Group E.
Mickey T isn’t the only man giving his thoughts on the game – you can hear from our goalkeepers on Friday Night Live from 6.30pm, only on Chelsea TV.

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