Manchester City’s history with Chelsea dates back to 1907, but only recently has the duel between these two clubs been considered of utmost importance.
City and Chelsea have been two distinct beneficiaries of the sport’s evolution with foreign ownership playing such a major role in the development of the Premier League. The sheer wealth of Roman Abramovich and Sheikh Mansour has seen the blue side of Manchester and west London emerge as two breeding grounds for success.
While their respective rises arrived at different times, the two clubs have capitalised on Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure and enjoyed their time at the top of the Premier League.
Despite City’s dominance since Pep Guardiola took charge, Chelsea have often come out on top in head-to-head meetings between the two sides since 1992 and there have been plenty of memorable matchups along the way.
A handshake refusal, Craig Bellamy’s heroics, and a rare home defeat for Chelsea; this contest had a little bit of everything.
Much was made of the relationship between John Terry and Wayne Bridge in the build-up to the contest and the pair refused to interact before kick-off which set the stage for a bitty affair in which Michael Ballack was sent off after City had raced into a 3-1 lead.
Bellamy scored his second and the visitors’ fourth in the closing stages before Frank Lampard added a mere consolation from the spot. This was a bad day at the office for Carlo Ancelotti’s Blues, who would go on to win the league, and a sign of things to come from the upstart Sky Blues.
This was the very best of Antonio Conte’s Chelsea.
After Kevin De Bruyne spurned a golden opportunity to give City a 2-0 lead, the Blues ran riot in transition to send a statement out to the rest of the Premier League. This was their eighth successive league triumph, and their ruthless efficiency in the final 30 minutes was nothing short of unnerving.
Diego Costa ignited the Blues’ charge with a fine solo effort after bullying Nicolas Otamendi before Willian and Eden Hazard produced devastating finishes on the break to seal an emphatic victory.
The Citizens avenged their 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge earlier in the season in some style as Guardiola’s eventual title-winners…