In a weekend where many of the top four contenders face off against each other, Chelsea gets to take on bottom of the table Sheffield United. The Blues are in good form under Thomas Tuchel, but they must be careful to not let the Blades’ league position fool them. Chris Wilder’s side has won three of its last five, with some victories coming against top Premier League teams. A win for Tuchel’s men would be a massive advantage in the hunt for automatic Champions League qualification after some of the favorable results at the weekend. Focus is needed though, especially when rotating this heavily.
Here is The Pride of London staff’s score predictions for the Sunday clash at Bramall Lane:
Kevin Peacock: 0-3 Chelsea
Sheffield (United) has had a couple of decent results of late, however, the Blades are still adrift at the bottom of the table. Tuchel appears to have put a smile back on the faces of some Chelsea players and has yet to see his new side concede a goal. Goals from Timo Werner, Marcos Alonso and Mason Mount secure the win.
Gabe Henderson: 0-2 Chelsea
Tuchel’s got his team flying high at the moment and oddly enough, I believe rotation will do the Blues’ forwards the world of good. An overhaul in the starting XI will get the attack firing on all cylinders as Tammy Abraham and Hakim Ziyech earn all three points for the club.
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Olly Smith: 0-2 Chelsea
It’s a shame Sheffield will be without Chelsea loanee Ethan Ampadu, who has been excellent for the Blades in their last two games—particularly against Marcus Rashford. He would have liked to put on a show for Tuchel. As for the Blues, they’ve won two on the trot, but “we aren’t creative enough, we aren’t positive enough” … it’s certainly not coming home any time soon. Defensive stability once again is great, but this isn’t Man United, where there are penalties almost every game for a chance to score. Perhaps the lack of creativity is something to do with the fact that half of the creators start on the bench in the current formation. The Blades are vastly improved, so it will be a tetchy one. Christian Pulisic and Callum Hudson-Odoi to score for a flattering scoreline.
Tan Yi Hao: 1-2 Chelsea
This is not the same Sheffield United that Chelsea faced in matchweek eight when the Blades were sitting on just one point after eight matches played. This is a Sheffield that recently came from behind to beat West Brom, having already seen off Man United away from home just six days prior. As such, expect yet another tight affair against an opponent content with defending in a low block as Tuchel attempts to make it four games unbeaten in his first four in charge.
Anthony Gatt: 0-2 Chelsea
Confidence is high amongst the team after an important win Thursday night, so I fully expect another professional performance against a side fighting for their lives. Chances will be hard to come by once again, so the players must be clinical. Goals from Hudson-Odoi, Mount and a fourth consecutive clean sheet for the Blues.
Olaoluwa Nwobodo: 0-3 Chelsea
It’s early, but it does seem like Tuchel has at least decided on a formation to use going forward. Some names are looking more likely to start than not as his playing style is also taking shape. The Blues are yet to concede under the German, but they shouldn’t take the upcoming game as a given. There are no easy games in the Premier League, and if the players go into this game expecting it to be easy, they’ve already lost. Chelsea dominated Sheffield United completely in the reverse fixture, hopefully it does so again.
Mike Malley: 0-2 Chelsea
If N’Golo Kante is back, healthy and ready to play, this scoreline could be a lot worse for the Blades. The diminutive Frenchman looked a step slow during his return to action against Tottenham on Thursday, but he should be able to dominate alongside one of Jorginho or Mateo Kovacic against such weak opposition. The Blues have been playing well since Tuchel’s appointment, taking seven points from a possible nine. This should be a relatively easy victory, and hopefully some of the players struggling for form can turn it around.
Scott Brant: 0-1 Chelsea
Of Sheffield United’s 25 total matches this season in all comps, 18 of them have been decided by a goal or less in or against the Blades’ favor. They don’t win by a lot and they don’t get beat by a lot. The Blues manage to get by with a victory, may not be 1-0, but they likely win by only a goal. Abraham to score because he’s our best all around striker.
Travis Tyler: 1-2 Chelsea
It is high time Chelsea do two things. The first, an attacker scores a goal under Tuchel and the second is the Blues sadly concede in a silly way on a set piece.
Nate Hofmann: 1-3 Chelsea
This is all about how Chris Wilder approaches the match. Last season, the Blades played with a style and attacking intent that was rare for an underfunded and un-fancied promoted side, and they rode that surprise factor to a top-half finish. This season, that novelty has worn off, and they suddenly look a lot like your typical “defend deep and hope to counter” relegation candidate. If that’s the role Wilder wants his team to play, it will be a fourth straight game under Tuchel where Chelsea will have to break down a staunch defense in order to score. So far, the Blues haven’t managed to truly pick any locks yet, but Sheffield should be an easier team to crack than most. It feels like this will be a comfortable win, but not necessarily the satisfying smackdown everyone is waiting to see from Tuchel’s team.
Michael DeVito: 0-3 Chelsea
Chelsea is off to a flying start under Tuchel, if not a ballistic one. It’s time for the training sessions to turn the forwards loose to score. Mount was an Everest against Spurs, but he can’t seem to put the ball in the ocean from Brighton beach. Time for Werner, Hudson-Odoi and Olivier Giroud to do the scoring.
What is your score prediction for the match? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter!