English Premier League: Chelsea vs. Sunderland – match preview

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English Premier League: Chelsea vs. Sunderland – match preview
The last time these two sides clashed was when Sunderland thrashed the Blues at Stamford Bridge in November. The match ended 0-3, and sparked Chelsea’s winless run of matches, which saw Carlo Ancelotti’s men lose ground to current
leaders Manchester United in the Premier League title race. When facing the Black Cats, the Blues were sitting on top of the table, but soon fell 10 points behind the Red Devils. That fixture marked Sunderland’s first victory over the Blues in around 10 years
and where Ancelotti’s men’s on-field performance went from shaky to pitiful, Steve Bruce’s side gained strength.
January saw the Black Cats gain 10 points out of a maximum of 12, despite losing Now Bruce’s men sit in the 6th position in the League, just one point behind Tottenham Hotspur. Chelsea showed a glimmer of
their strong form they displayed earlier on in the League, in their previous League match. The Blues managed to beat Bolton at the Reebok Stadium with four goals and will be looking to steadily build on their form and forget their recent stumbling days. Their
goalkeeper Petr Cech’s performances have been brilliant, and thus the Blues are the team with the best defensive record this season.
The Blues have played one less game than the home side’s 24 this season. Sunderland have managed to attain 37 points and have acquired 4 more in their campaign. The Black Cats have won 9 games and lost 5, whereas Ancelotti’s
side have won 12 and lost half that number. Bruce’s men have drawn 10 games, whereas the Stamford Bridge-based squad have drawn half that amount of fixtures. The Black Cats have scored 28 goals and conceded 4 less as compared to the Blues’ 42 goals scored
and 19 conceded. Bruce’s men have 38 yellow cards and four red cards to their name, whereas Chelsea have collected 33 yellows and one red.
The Blues have been victorious in their previous five matches played on Sunderland turf, and they will be looking to emulate their record by winning in their midweek fixture at the Stadium of Light. The two sides have clashed in
111 matches, with Chelsea being victorious in 51 instances, and Sunderland in 39. The Black Cats managed to secure victories in both matches against their Blue opponents in the 2000/01 season. Bruce’s side have yet to be defeated this year, as they have managed
to win three fixtures and draw one in January. Sunderland and Chelsea have both managed to keep 11 clean sheets in their campaign so far (as well as Manchester City), which is the most any of the other teams in the League have managed to keep.
Ancelotti’s men have tasted more defeats rather than victories in their away fixtures. They have lost 5 away games and won 4 played in the League this season. Sunderland will be looking to contain the French striker,
who has managed to score six times against the Black Cats in their previous five Premier League meetings. are all unable to play due to knee injuries.
The Chelsea injury bench includes, who has a calf problem. Alex may not feature for the Blues due to a knee injury.



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