With the final pairing decided in UEFA’s three competitions, including the 2023 Champions League, we have a rare midweek break from European football. That makes room for the best domestic action, and on Thursday, we see Manchester United and Chelsea clash at Old Trafford from 20:00 GMT.
The Red Devils hope to make home advantage count to secure a Premier League top-four finish and place in next season’s Champions League. Securing the riches offered by UEFA’s premier tournament is a must for a team with the kind of outgoings seen at the Theatre of Dreams. Their opponents are down in 12th with little to play for in their last two games.
The stats attached to this fixture show these teams are no strangers to meeting in important games before a vast global audience. Football fans who enjoy making predictions based on stats and form will be delighted to learn each of the last three Man Utd v Chelsea games have finished 1-1, with the previous five finishing level. Should we prepare for another draw, or can the home team nick all three points?
United holding on
Man Utd started the week sitting fourth in the Premier League table, with their stats for the season showing 21 wins, six draws, and nine defeats, with 52 goals scored, and 41 conceded. The 69 points claimed places them level on points with Newcastle in third, but the hosts have won two on the bounce and are searching for a hattrick.
A home win on Thursday evening could move United up to third in the list, and that’s as high as they could finish this term with leaders Man City and runners-up Arsenal miles clear. It hasn’t been the kind of successful season United followers had been hoping for, but a top-four finish gives them a solid foundation to plan for next season. One final push is required, but the locals enter with confidence.
Having claimed a maximum of six points from their last two games, United know another victory would lift them above Newcastle into the bronze medal position. Having already beaten Wolves 2-0 at home and Bournemouth 1-0 on the road, United has what it takes to add a third win to pull clear of a resurgent Liverpool that has moved to fifth in the league.
Fans feeling blue
It has been a season to forget for everyone connected to Stamford Bridge. The club’s ownership changed hands, and a bright future, followed by a free-spending Christmas in the winter transfer window. Chelsea attracted some huge names, but the new faces have struggled to settle into their new environment.
When reading the form, it’s easy to see why the London side is in midtable and going nowhere fast. They travel to Manchester with their stats showing 11 wins, 10 draws, and a jaw-dropping 15 defeats, with 36 goals scored and 42 conceded. That’s shockingly poor from a club capable of performing so much better. The Blues have lost the same number of games as Bournemouth in 15th, which worries fans.
The visitors arrive at Old Trafford winning just one of their last five games and taking one point from their previous two games. Chelsea were held to a 2-2 home draw by Nottingham Forest before losing 1-0 in Lancashire against Man City on Sunday. The beaten club had a good fight but lost to a goal from Alvarez inside the opening 12 minutes. They did well to recover from losing that goal and had chances to get level.
Man Utd v Chelsea prediction
We’re confident this will be a thrilling contest involving two of the biggest teams in English football. Thursday evening isn’t exactly a primetime slot, but needs must as the EPL races to pick up the spare games and complete the season. Man Utd fans know a win over their off-colour rivals would be enough to cement their position in the top four prize places.
Chelsea can make life difficult for their hosts, as they did across the city at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday. The stats suggest this game may end in a draw, but that’s not a result that would suit either team too well. Those following the stats may want to play the draw or predict both teams to score for the fourth meeting in quick succession.
Premier League odds
22Bet members can gamble on the outcome of Thursday’s game, and many eye-catching markets are available. These include Manchester United winning the game at odds of 1.59 while Chelsea can be backed at 5.05 to score an upset on the road.
We expect the draw to be popular for obvious reasons, and a level finish is yours at 4.42 Other options worth a glance at include the total number of goals, handicap, and first goalscorer. There’s something to suit all bettors and budgets.
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