Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho returns to Stamford Bridge hoping to avoid a third away defeat in as many matches against Chelsea. So which team do the stats suggest will fare best?
Chelsea have lost just one of their last 15 home league games against Manchester United
The Blues have won nine and drawn five of their last 15 Premier League encounters with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge. United’s only win during that run came in the form of a 3-2 victory in 2012/13, Sir Alex Ferguson’s final season. There is one thing that will give the visitors hope: Chelsea have already lost as many Premier League games at home this term as they did in 2016/17 (2). Will Mourinho’s men pile further misery on the champions on Sunday?
Manchester United have lost more Premier League games against Chelsea (17) than they have against any other side
It’s safe to say the Red Devils have struggled against Chelsea in recent years, particularly in the Premier League. Not only have they been beaten by the Blues more often they have by anyone else, but Chelsea have also scored more Premier League goals (66) than any other side against Manchester United. Prior to last season’s 2-0 win at Old Trafford, United had gone 12 matches without a win against Chelsea in all competitions. They haven’t secured successive victories over the Blues since September 2011.
David De Gea has kept 22 Premier League clean sheets since the start of last season
Mourinho has come under plenty of criticism for his defensive approach in recent weeks, but few fans will be complaining about a point at Anfield and a win over Tottenham at Old Trafford – it’s perhaps the defeat at Huddersfield that is slightly more concerning. Regardless, much of their solidity comes from the man between the posts. David De Gea has kept more clean sheets than any other goalkeeper in Europe’s ‘big five’ leagues since the beginning of the 2016/17 campaign. Chelsea might have a tough time finding a way past the Spaniard.
Manchester United substitutes have been directly involved in a league-high 11 goals this season
Remaining tight at the back has allowed Manchester United to come alive in the latter stages of matches this term. Anthony Martial’s winner against Spurs was United’s 10th goal in the final 10 minutes of a Premier League game this season. Martial himself has directly contributed to six of the Red Devils’ 11 goals scored by substitutes, finding the net four times and providing two assists from the bench.
Romelu Lukaku has failed to score in each of his last five appearances in all competitions
After scoring in nine of his first 10 competitive appearances for Manchester United in all competitions, Romelu Lukaku failed to find the net in October, drawing blanks against Liverpool, Benfica (twice), Huddersfield, Swansea (EFL Cup) and Tottenham. The Belgian has scored just 15 goals in 59 Premier League appearances against the ‘big six’ clubs, compared to 77 goals in 137 games against non ‘big six’ opponents. Lukaku didn’t score a single goal in 15 appearances for Chelsea, and he’ll be eager to end his current dry spell against his former club.