FULL TIME: Not good enough, not by a long shot.
90+2min: Hudson-Odoi gets the consolation. Great ball in from
Mount Havertz, CHO finishes at the far post. 1-3.
90min: Two more minutes to endure.
88min: Werner tries to cross, blocked for a corner. Mount takes this one, cleared.
87min: Mendy down to block a cross from Cancelo intended for Agüero.
86min: Agüero & Mahrez on for De Bruyne & Foden.
85min: Chilwell’s cross is blocked for a corner, which he himself takes, outswinging. City clear at the front post. Chelsea probe on the right, with Mount finding Havertz, but his shot is blocked.
83min: Silva wins the ball against Sterling but gets called for a foul anyway. Free kick City, just outside the corner of the penalty area. De Bruyne’s shot is deflected for a corner, which Zouma clears eventually after City play it around at first.
79min: Pulisic wins a corner, which Mount takes, inswinging. City clear.
77min: Werner tries to get past Stones, but instead just runs the ball out of bounds. Meanwhile, Havertz on for Kovačić.
74min: Mount’s cross is deflected high. Werner goes for it gamely, but City clear easily.
71min: Kovačić into the book for hacking down KDB from behind.
69min: Hudson-Odoi wriggles past two on the right and plays a 1-2, but passes up the chance to shoot with his left and City crowd him out ... and counter with Sterling on the right, but Chelsea defend it well enough and prevent a shot.
66min: Gilmour gives the ball away and City counter at pace. The ball in to De Bruyne running the center is perfect, but Mendy’s out quickly to get down and grab it off KDB’s foot.
64min: Hudson-Odoi & Gilmour on for Ziyech & Kanté
62min: De Bruyne tries to curl one around Mendy from 25 yards. Well wide.
61min: City set up camp in the final third. Chelsea half-clear once, but City recover and keep possession with ease.
58min: Kovačić tries to take matters into his own hands, wriggling through a couple in midfield before slicing a left-footed shot not far wide of the far post.
56min: Chelsea create with Pulisic, who finds Chilwell in space. No one attacks his excellent low ball into the area however and Zinchenko shepherds it out for a goal kick.
55min: Chelsea get into the final third, with Ziyech playing infield towards Mount. He goes for a first-time shot, but scuffs his effort and Steffen can easily collect.
53min: Kanté rinsed again, earns himself a yellow card for pulling back Sterling in frustration. De Bruyne chips in a nice free kick, Rodri all alone gets the header. Mendy makes a great save to keep it just 0-3.
51min: Kovačić gets caught in possession, but this time, Foden’s cross is well overhit, much to the dismay of Sterling all alone on the far post.
50min: Nice City move down the left ends in a poor Zinchenko shot from the top of the box. Mendy saves and holds on.
48min: Chelsea having a bit of trouble playing out, but then do string a few good passes together to get into City’s half. Where we run out of ideas.
SECOND HALF: No changes at the half for either side.
HALF-TIME: Well, that was absolutely terrible after the first 12 minutes.
45+2min: Pulisic on the ball again, loses it and tries to win it back, wiping out Cancelo in the process. Pulisic gets a yellow, but the referee actually pulls the play back for an initial foul on Pulisic by Cancelo. Ziyech’s free kick in is flicked on, but Azpi can’t generate any power on the far post and Steffen makes the easy catch.
45+1min: Werner and Pulisic try to combine but are not on the same page.
44min: Sterling bullies his way past Kanté, playing square to De Bruyne, who finds Foden. He feeds the ball in to Gundogan, who goes for a fancy backheel flick and just misses the far post.
43min: Mount with a nice ball out to Pulisic, but he can’t get past Cancelo.
42min: Chilwell with some lovely footwork down the left, but has no one to cross to, so City clear easily.
38min: Chelsea try to attack, but Azpi’s cross is straight out of bounds.
36min: Foden goes for a header wide open on the far post, but gets it all wrong.
35min: Chelsea win a free kick in midfield as Rodri’s called for a high boot on Kovačić. Ziyech chips it in, but City clear ahead of Azpilicueta. Kanté picks up the loose ball and tries to play wide, but instead gives the ball away as the last man and City can counter. Kanté recovers on Sterling and Mendy forces him wide. Chelsea stream back, but Sterling’s still on the ball. He takes a shot eventually and hits the post, but the rebound falls to De Bruyne, who slides it home. 3-0, City.
30min: Zouma makes a couple blocks as City are in the area once again.
29min: Werner and Pulisic combine, and play a wonderful 1-2 in the area to create a chance for the latter. But he passes up a left-footed shot, and City can clear the resulting scramble.
27min: Still all City. Cancelo with a chance to shoot after another Foden pass, but he volleys well over.
24min: Chilwell misplays a high ball, which reaches Sterling. Chilwell recovers to block the cross for a corner. Chelsea clear the corner that was taken short.
22min: Still all City as Bernardo cuts inside on the right and tries his luck. Mendy’s down to save the low shot.
20min: City rip Chelsea apart. Foden scores, finding the vacated space by Thiago Silva, who had made an initial sliding tackle but didn’t quite get the ball out of bounds and couldn’t recover. 2-0, City.
18min: City keep pressing and Foden finds Gundogan at the top of the area. His turns is magnificent, and so is his finish, past the lunging Silva and the fingertips of Mendy, into the bottom corner. 1-0, City.
17min: City threaten again, with Sterling crossing from the right. It hits Silva, and fortunately bounces straight into Mendy’s hands.
16min: Cancelo plays in De Bruyne and he finds his shot this time, but fortunately drags it just wide of the far post with Mendy beaten.
12min: Kanté wins the ball high up this time, and Werner picks up the ball. But Rodri is able to squeeze his body between Werner and the ball from behind and clears. VAR checks for a possible penalty — it looks borderline at the very least — but we play on.
10min: Kanté wins the ball in midfield and releases Ziyech down the right. His ball in is blocked by Zinchenko however.
9min: Werner and Mount combine to play in Ziyech on the right. He checks back and tries a couple left-footed crosses, but the first one’s blocked and the second’s over everyone’s head.
7min: Kovačić gives the ball away, but Chelsea recover well with Kanté to prevent De Bruyne from taking a shot. He manages a cutback, but Rodri misses his shot. Chelsea try to counter, but Werner’s square ball towards Pulisic in the area is intercepted and cleared as the game suddenly opens up.
6min: Mount’s inswinger is flicked on at the near post by Werner, but City get the second header and Chelsea have another corner. Mount’s inswinger this time cleared.
5min: Mount pressures Rodri, who passes back to his goalkeeper, who inexplicably picks it up. It’s inside his own area, but it’s just an indirect free kick. Ziyech’s effort from the rollback is blocked for a corner.
3min: Chelsea’s first foray on the left, but Chilwell’s ushered out by a couple defenders.
1min: Chelsea win the ball and pass it around before Thiago Silva tries to long through ball. Ruben Dias clears ahead of Ziyech and Werner.
KICK-OFF: The teams are out, in their classic colors. A round of applause for Tommy Docherty follows, as the big screen plays a short tribute video for the 92-year-old who passed away this week, to the zero fans in the stands. The players then take a knee, and then we can begin, with City kicking off.
Chelsea, on poor form, take on Manchester City, in great form, with both teams right in the thick of the top half action in the Premier League. In fact, we both come in on 26 points, though City have got there in two fewer matches.
We need a massive response today, after collecting just 4 points from 15 in the our last five league games. With no Premier League match to play for nearly two weeks, Lampard has gone for all the big boys — just as preferred by the community — including a fit Hakim Ziyech. Let’s hope they perform!
Here we go.
Chelsea starting lineup (4-3-3):
Mendy | Chilwell, Silva, Zouma, Azpilicueta (c) | Mount, Kanté, Kovačić | Pulisic, Werner, Ziyech
Substitutes from: Arrizabalaga, Rüdiger, Emerson, Jorginho, Gilmour, Havertz, Hudson-Odoi, Abraham, Giroud
Manchester City starting lineup (4-2-4-0):
Steffen | Zinchenko, Stones, Dias, Cancelo | Gundogan, Rodri | Foden, De Bruyne, Bernardo, Sterling
Substitutes from: Carson, Agüero, Mendy, Fernandinho, Mahrez, Delap, Harwood-Bells, Mbete
Date / Time: Sunday, January 3, 2021, 16.30 GMT, 11:30am EST; 10pm IST
Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6
Referee: Anthony Taylor (on pitch); Mike Dean (VAR)
On TV: Sky Sports Premier League (UK); NBCSN, Telemundo (USA); Star Sports Select HD1 (India); SuperSport Premier League, Canal+ Sport 3 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: Sky Go (UK); NBC Sports Live, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo (USA); Hotstar (India); DStv Now (NGA)
Be excellent to each other, and party on, dudes.