Manchester City’s season turned when they beat Chelsea in the Premier League and the pair will square off in the FA Cup semi-finals on Saturday.
City head into Saturday’s last-four tie with their sights still firmly set on sealing a historic quadruple, but Chelsea have shown enough over recent weeks to suggest it won’t be plain sailing.
City’s 3-1 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in January was a major moment and had plenty of people sitting up and taking notice after a mixed first half of the term.
That triumph extended City’s unbeaten streak to 11 matches and was their fourth win in succession, while they eventually went on to win 21 in a row across all competitions.
League Focus Put to One Side
The Premier League title already looks to be in the bag and they could land their first piece of silverware next weekend when they take on Tottenham in the Carabao Cup final.
Guardiola’s men are also into the semi-finals of the Champions League and hoping to take another big step towards the quadruple on Saturday.
Chelsea have taken huge strides forwards since that loss to City in the league and appear to be heading in a positive direction under Thomas Tuchel.
The Blues are also into the last-four of the Champions League and are firmly back in the hunt for a top-four finish in the top-flight.
Tight Tie Expected At Wembley
Chelsea lacked organisation at the back under previous boss Frank Lampard but Tuchel has massively improved them in that area since taking the reins in January.
They have lost just twice in 18 games across all competitions, shipping eight goals in the process, although five of those came in one game as they fell to a shock defeat against West Brom.
City have been incredibly strong at the back throughout the term with Guardiola adapting their style and relying heavily on the partnership of Ruben Dias and John Stones.
With a place in the final up for grabs, a tense and tight affair looks set to be on the cards and backing under 1.5 goals, which is available at
41/20, offers interest.
Guardiola Has Head-to-Head Edge
Saturday’s meeting will be the sixth between Guardiola and Tuchel after the pair previously locked horns in Germany.
The first clash between the duo came in 2013 when Tuchel was in charge of Mainz and Guardiola’s Bayern ran out 4-1 winners in the Bundesliga.
Guardiola has won four of five encounters with clubs managed by Tuchel, including a 4-3 victory on penaltieswhen Bayern saw off Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal final in 2015/16, while the two clubs played out a goalless draw earlier that term.
City have won two of their last three engagements with Chelsea and can be backed at
20/23 to come out on top at Wembley.
De Bruyne to Haunt Former Employers
Kevin de Bruyne joined Chelsea in January 2012 but he struggled for gametime, making just nine appearances across all competitions before joining Wolfsburg on a permanent deal in 2014.
The Belgian was hugely successful in Germany and City parted with a then club-record £55million to bring him back to England.
De Bruyne has continued to develop during his time in the Premier League, becoming one of the best in the world and he has been integral to City’s success over the past few years.
He’s played a major role in helping the club to compete across all fronts this season and, as is so often the case, De Bruyne has been a thorn in the side of former employers Chelsea.
The midfielder has netted four times in 12 previous appearances against the west Londoners, scoring in the 3-1 victory at Stamford Bridge earlier this term.
9/4 to score anytime, De Bruyne offers value to hit the back of the net on Saturday after bagging four in his last seven across all competitions.
*All odds correct at time of writing