MANCHESTER- Thanks to a thrilling 1-1 draw between EPL heavyweights, Chelsea and defending champion, Manchester City, match day 5 proved to be an eventful one.
With multiple upsets ranging from West Ham United upsetting Liverpool FC (3-1) and newly promoted Leicester City defeating Manchester United (5-3) and the Manchester City-Chelsea fixture didn’t let up.
The first half saw it’s good share of yellow cards as the Manchester City and Chelsea played a very physical match.
Manchester City Discipline: (Player Links courtesy of ESPN FC)
Fernandinho : Yellow Card ’12
Pablo Zabaleta: Yellow Card ’32 (Zabelata would be sent off in ’66 after fouling Eden Hazard)
David Silva: Yellow Card ’40
Yaya Touré: Yellow Card ’42
Chelsea Discipline: (Player Links courtesy of ESPN FC)
Ramires: Yellow Card ’35
Nemanja Matic: Yellow Card ’39
Diego Costa: Yellow Card ’66
Branislav Ivanovic: Yellow Card ’77
The second half proved to be the very eventful at the Etihad as the club’s opened up the match in fine form but this match didn’t get eventful until the 66th minute when Argentina international Pablo Zabeleta was sent off after colliding with Chelsea superstar forward Eden Hazard.
Shortly after this, World Cup champion André Schürrle would make the tides turn scoring a goal off of a cross from Hazard giving Chelsea a 1-0 Lead over the “Citizens” but this wouldn’t last long.
In the 78′, City boss, Manuel Pellegrini, took a gamble starting former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard (on loan from MLS side, New York City F.C.) And within the first 7 minutes of Lampard’s play against his former club Pellegrini’s Gamble payed off. Lampard knocked the ball into the goal off a cross from fellow City Teammate James Milner to tie things up toward the end of the 90 minute match.
Chelsea had the opportunity to win with a free kick from Didier Drogba which sailed over the goal post. Statistically, City won this game dominating possession, shots on goal, and tackles to draw the League Leaders (1-1). What does this draw mean for Manchester City?
– City made Chelsea look vulnerable despite Chelsea’s current domination of the League.
– City is STILL a title contender despite the team’s current run not having won a match within the last three fixtures. The season is still fairly young, and other clubs will drop points here within the next few fixtures as long as City stays healthy they can catch up to second place and challenge Chelsea for the title.
– City can look to their substitutes to get the job done. Lampard had multiple opportunities to score for City after his goal in the 85′ minute.
How does this match fair for the Chelsea Football Club?
– Despite last week’s disappointing draw (1-1) to German side, Schalke 04 in the UEFA Champions League, Chelsea still shows it’s might under the leadership of Jose Mourinho in his quest to win his third title with the West London club.
– Mourinho and his medical staff have done a really good job of working with Diego Costa, with his apparent hamstring injury that sidelined the Spanish International from playing the UEFA Euro qualifiers with the Spanish national team.
– Chelsea can rely on their summer signings to put the club in the driver’s seat to a EPL title. Costa is only a goal away at breaking the record for most goals scored in the beginning of the season, Cesc Fabregas can score goals and not only that. He can set them up for Costa, or Drogba. Filipe Luis made a good replacement for David Luiz who currently plays for Paris Saint-Germain.
As long as Chelsea can learn from their small mistakes, they can continue to take the EPL by storm and not only that they could potentially be crowned European champions this year.
Manchester City’s next fixture will be against English 2nd Division side, Sheffield Wednesday in the Capital One Cup on September 24th at 2:45 ET. Chelsea’s next fixture will also be on the 24th against the Bolton Wanderers in the Capital One Cup which will played at 2:45 ET.