Inside Blue Fri 2 Mar 2018
Chelsea face a difficult visit this weekend to the Etihad Stadium to face a Manchester City side that has not lost a home game since December 2016, when goals by Diego Costa, Willian and Eden Hazard helped the Blues to come from behind to win 3-1 in the Premier League.
Since then, City have not suffered defeat at home for 26 league matches and 36 games overall, a daunting record which includes 13 consecutive home league wins.
However, Chelsea have shown a knack for putting an end to long unbeaten runs in the past and will look to do more of the same when we take on the league leaders at their own patch.
Stamford Bridge, 2 February 1991
When Arsenal arrived at Stamford Bridge in February 1991, they had been unbeaten in 26 league games, a run which dated back to April the previous season. In contrast to the Gunners, the Blues had lost four of our previous five games but we got the better of our London rivals that day with Graham Stuart heading us in front midway through the second half before Kerry Dixon (pictured above) tapped in our second two minutes from time. Alan Smith pulled a goal back for Arsenal in stoppage time but it proved to be just a consolation as George Graham’s side suffered their only defeat of that campaign.
Stamford Bridge, 3 October 1999
Manchester United were on a run of 29 league matches without defeat when they faced Chelsea in October 1999 but their unbeaten streak was spectacularly laid to rest after they were torn apart by Gianluca Vialli’s side. Gustavo Poyet got the Blues rolling by heading in Dan Petrescu’s cross after 27 seconds and Chris Sutton nodded in our second minutes before United self-destructed with Nicky Butt sent off for petulantly kicking Dennis Wise. The Blues took full advantage of the extra man with Poyet bagging his second of the game, Henning Berg putting into his own net and Jody Morris firing between the legs of Massimo Taibi to complete a memorable 5-0 rout.
Stamford Bridge, 18 April 2012
Having lifted the Champions League trophy in 2011, Barcelona looked on course to retain their title the following season as they won five of six games in the group stage, hammered Bayer Leverkusen 10-2 on aggregate in the last 16 and eliminated Italian champions AC Milan in the quarter-finals. Few gave Chelsea any real hope of beating Pep Guardiola’s side in the semi-finals but we Blues took the lead at the Bridge through Didier Drogba just before half-time and absorbed intense pressure in the second half for a 1-0 win which ended Barça’s 16-match unbeaten run in the competition. We completed the job with a 2-2 draw at the Nou Camp a fortnight later to reach the final.
Etihad Stadium, 3 Feb 2014
Our visit to the Etihad Stadium this Sunday may seem daunting but Chelsea have shown an ability in the past to burst City’s bubble at their home ground. When we travelled there in February 2014, the Citizens were on a run of 11 consecutive home league wins in which they had netted 42 goals. However, the Blues played an excellent counter-attacking game with Branislav Ivanovic putting us ahead after 32 minutes and our well-marshalled defence restricting the home side to only three shots on target despite conceding 65 percent of possession. Chelsea’s 1-0 win saw us become the first team to prevent City from scoring in a home league game for over three years.
Anfield, 27 April 2014
City fans may have felt aggrieved after the loss to Chelsea but they would be grateful to the Blues after we swung the title race in their direction later that season. When we travelled to Anfield in late April, Liverpool were three points clear of City with three games left and sensing their first league title in 24 years after a run of 11 straight league victories and an unbeaten run of 16 games, dating back to a 2-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge in December. However, Steven Gerrard’s slip allowed Demba Ba to score Chelsea’s opener on the stroke of half-time and the Blues turned aside everything thrown at them by the desperate hosts until Willian added a second in stoppage-time to clinch the points and prolong the agony of the Reds.