Manchester United vs Chelsea Premier League Predictions

Premier League Manchester United vs Chelsea
Manchester United vs Chelsea Premier League

The match is over.
Score: 4-0

A battle of two teams with designs on returning to the top of the table takes place on Sunday as Frank Lampard begins his Premier League managerial career.

Predictions

After a summer of transfer rancour, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will presumably be happy to get on with playing football. But the off-season hasn’t brought the reinforcements the manager will have wanted – United entering the final days of the transfer window without signing a centre-back, central midfielder or striker – and the futures of Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku remain up in the air.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Daniel James have moved to United as Solskjaer looks to give his team a bit more energy and pace, and Harry Maguire looks like joining them, but it’s not enough – not if United are to have any real hope of returning to the Champions League, never mind challenging rivals Manchester City and Liverpool for the Premier League title.

Chelsea, meanwhile, have a transfer embargo hanging over them, curtailing Lampard’s ability to bring new faces to Stamford Bridge. But after years of collecting players and loaning them elsewhere, and producing talented kids from the club’s academy and never giving them a chance, this could be a blessing in disguise.

Lampard’s Derby County team was built around Chelsea youngster Mason Mount and while it might be expecting too much for the 20-year-old to replace Eden Hazard, the likes of him, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ruben Loftus-Cheek should get more game time than they would otherwise have expected.

Christian Pulisic, signed before Chelsea’s transfer ban came down, will nonetheless carry a lot of expectation after Hazard moved to Real Madrid, and it will be a baptism of fire for the United States international at Old Trafford. But with neither team particularly settled at the moment, perhaps this is the best possible time for Pulisic to stamp his authority on his new team.

There’s an air of freshness about Chelsea that’s still lacking at United. That extra vibrancy should help Lampard to a winning start – 2-1 to the visitors.

Betting Tips

The first day of the season is a delight for all football fans – until the final whistle blows and your team’s weaknesses have been brutally exposed. That’s the situation United supporters are fearing as Chelsea seem a more settled side than the perpetually-evolving United, but both teams have goals in them. Chelsea to win and both teams to score is 11/2 at 888Sport.

Chelsea’s talented youngsters – mostly wingers and attacking midfielders – will need someone on the end of the play. That’s where Olivier Giroud comes in. He’s not the most elegant of players but he’s effective in front of goal, something which the online betting sites have remembered. Royal Panda make it 2/1 for Giroud to score anytime.

Statistics

Head to Head

United were unbeaten against Chelsea last season. A 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge and a 1-1 tie at Old Trafford came either side of a 2-0 United win in the FA Cup.

Stats

  • Chelsea haven’t won at Old Trafford since 2013, when a late Juan Mata goal gave Jose Mourinho’s side the win.
  • Ironically, Mata would join United a few months later, and Mourinho, of course, was United manager between 2016 and 2018.
  • New Chelsea boss Lampard scored seven times against United in his playing career, for West Ham as well as the Blues.
  • Lampard, who turned 41 in June, is the youngest manager in the Premier League. Eddie Howe is second – 42 in November – while Solskjaer is a positively ancient 46.

Aspiring football journalist who realised he could put his vast knowledge towards gambling and making some money. With years spent on Football Manager, his boyhood obsession has carried over into his adult life and he's proven his mum that all that time spent playing a game wasn't to be wasted. A European football expert, James writes about anything on the continent and has began expanding his knowledge to other leagues in South America, Asia and the USA.

All Predictions by James Cooke

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