It doesn’t feel right to call Manchester United versus Chelsea a Super Sunday clash because these teams hold no sway this season after an indifferent start that has left them struggling with form. How can the meeting of a fifth positioned United against a 13th positioned Chelsea be Super Sunday?
United often flatter to deceive under Van Gaal as one moment they put in a five-star performance like how they trounced Stoke City 3-0 mid-week then be ordinary the next match. After watching the team, I have discovered that one element LVG should make permanent to that line up is Juan Mata. Mata is a brilliant passer than Maloune Fellaini.
Chelsea appear to have stabilised as they have not lost in the last eight matches in the league under Guus Hiddink. And the devastating connection between Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas that resulted in many goals last season appear to have been re-established. The coming back of Mikel Obi in the holding role has also stabilised the midfield and protection of the tired defence. It’s going to be a cracker this Sunday and the game will be won on fine margins.
Match of the week is between league leaders Leicester City against second-placed Manchester City. Those who were saying Leicester has difficult fixtures starting with Liverpool, Man City and Arsenal have now changed tune after the Foxes demolished Liverpool 2-0 with Jamie Vardy’s incredible brace. They are now saying it is Arsenal and Man City that have difficult matches against the league leaders. No one will survive the raw energy of Leicester City, not even Man City.
I expect City to come firing on all cylinders because it is an opportunity to halt Leicester from running away with the league. If City (47) loses, Leicester (50) will be six points clear above them. Manuel Pellegrini is operating under difficult circumstances after he confirmed he is leaving and after the club confirmed appointment of Pep Guardiola. Although Aguero has started scoring again, City remain vulnerable in defence without Vincent Kompany. The best City can do is a draw.
And now to Spain where Gary Neville’s coaching career came under threat after a humiliating 7-0 defeat at Nou Camp at the hands of Catalan giants, Barcelona. It was a baptism of fire.
When he took over, Valencia were just five points off Champions League places. In eight attempts, he has failed to win a single La Liga match. The team is now five points off relegation zone.
At the moment, it would appear Neville is still in charge because he is friends with the club’s Singaporean owner, Peter Lim. In fact he got the job because the two knew each other after the owner invested in a non-league club owned by Neville.
So what is the problem? Neville has no coaching record apart from being Roy Hogson’s assistant. It was not wise for him to accept the Valencia job because he is neither familiar with Spanish football nor the language.