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    How Pep's Manchester City can beat Conte's Chelsea winning machine




    Premier League leaders Chelsea visit the Etihad looking to extend their winning streak to eight against a Manchester City side who are placed in third place and are only one point behind the blues .Chelsea so far this season have a had a mixed bag of results against the top sides in the premier league. They have lost to both title contenders Liverpool and Arsenal but emphatically beat Manchester United 4-0 at Stamford Bridge.

    December presents a range of domestic challenges for Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, City will face Chelsea, Liverpool, and Arsenal in the coming weeks. So how can Pep Guardiola end Managerial rival Conte's winning streak?



    1. Stop Wingbacks

    Pedro and Victor Moses have excelled in the wing-back positions since Conte's change of formation to 3-4-3 in early October. The pair has scored six goals and has eight assists combined in the league.  Wing-backs are an important position in a back three formation. Stopping Pedro and Moses joining in attacks will be key for City. To stop Moses and Pedro joy on the wings, City will have to encourage their fullbacks to go forward at every opportunity forcing Chelsea's backline to become a defensive five. By doing this it would cut out the threat poised from the flanks. It will also create more space in the middle for City to exploit as N'golo Kante and Matic will look to help the Wingbacks with their defensive duties.



    2. Win the midfield battle

    It is no secret that City has the most creative set of players between the two sides, the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva, and at times Raheem Sterling can unlock the door against any defence. But before City can think about their flair players producing the goods, City will have to win the midfield  battle first . Matic and Kante will enjoy pressing City hoping they will make a mistake to intercept and win the ball back. With Yaya Toure back in Pep's good books, a midfield three of him, Fernandinho and Silva may be the right combination to win that battle. City have the potential of being the first team Conte has faced in this formation were his side will have to be second best in the middle of the park. City will have unsurprisingly more of the ball on Saturday but will need to use it wisely when attacking and more importantly to control the tempo of the match.


    3. Sergio Aguero

    Goals, goals, goals and more goals. Sergio Aguero is a special footballer who records speaks for itself the Argentine has scored 33 goals in his past 34 Premier League appearances for Manchester City.  He has the quality alone to win any game for City. Now joint top league goalscorer with Chelsea's Diego Costa after his brace against Burnley he is fine form and is a key to a City win. City will need to feed him the ball at every opportunity. A battle between Aguero, Gary Cahill and David Luiz looks very promising if you're a City fan. He showed already during his time in the Premier League that he is the guy for the big occasions. Scored twice last season in this fixture.


    4. Playing a back three

    Manchester City have played a 3-4-3 in a number of fixtures already this season. Matching Chelsea formation could be another way to beat Chelsea.  Providing more support to Aguero and co in a central area whilst having wing- backs going forward could put Chelsea under a huge amount of pressure one, they have no faced in this system. How would Moses and Pedro cope with the likes Clichy and Navas running into attacking position? In space they would like to occupy offensively. This could be an interesting alternative to cancelling Chelsea 3-4-3.


    5. Stop Diego Costa

    The Spanish striker has been exceptional for the league leaders this season scoring 10 goals and  has 4 assists also. The only way City can stop Chelsea's Marksman is to disrupt his game, test his discipline which has been good so far this season but City centre-backs will need to be as tight to the striker as much off the ball as they will be on the ball. Arguably getting Costa angry can backfire if one of City's players are sent off or Costa through pure frustration  produces a goal. Either way, Costa is in fine form getting physical would be a good start to stopping his mojo.   


    By Joshua Adu-Donkor



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