Chelsea host Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on Monday night in the final fifth round tie of this season’s FA Cup.
The hosts go into it off the back of a 2-1 win at Malmo in the Europa League on Thursday night in which Maurizio Sarri started 5-6 players who will be expected to start on Monday too.
48 hours earlier Manchester United were beaten 2-0 at home by Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their Champions League second round tie – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first defeat as caretaker manager in what was his 12th game in charge.
Prior to the midweek action, United had leapfrogged Chelsea into fourth spot in the Premier League with a 3-0 thrashing of Fulham last weekend followed up by the Blues being hammered 6-0 at Manchester City on Sunday.
Manchester United were 11 points behind Chelsea when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho at the helm two months ago – nine matches later and they are now above them
Chelsea did add a major reinforcement in attack in January when they brought Gonzalo Higuain in from Juventus. He fired in a brace in his only home game for the West London club so far during a 5-0 thrashing of Huddersfield Town. But the Argentine has yet to experience his side scoring on their travels – losing 4-0 at Bournemouth before facing Manchester City. He did not feature over in Sweden during the week.
Manchester United are expected to be without Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard for this one which comes as a big blow for the caretaker manager. However, Marcus Rashford could be moved out on the wing as Romelu Lukaku is expected to start up front against his former side. The Norwegian also has Alexis Sanchez, Juan Mata and Tahith Chong to pick from.
The Red Devils have looked stronger defensively in recent weeks too but will need to be at their best to keep the likes of Higuain, Eden Hazard, Pedro and Willian away from their goal.
I’ve not been a fan of Sarri’s defensive tactics since he came to the Premier League and I’ve never been a fan of David Luiz. Therefore Manchester United will score at Stamford Bridge and I think they will outscore Chelsea too.