Manchester City, Chelsea in an explosive EPL clash


London: Eden Hazard says Chelsea will carry the momentum from their superb Champions League win over Atletico Madrid into Saturday’s Stamford Bridge showdown with free-scoring Premier League leaders Manchester City.

Having fallen behind to Atletico in Madrid on Wednesday, Chelsea levelled when Hazard teed up Alvaro Morata and snatched a 2-1 victory with the last kick of the game when Michy Batshuayi stabbed home.

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City have been in stunning form since the start of the season, but Hazard believes beating Atletico — Champions League finalists in two of the past four seasons — shows Chelsea can compete with anyone.

“Since I came here, it’s the first time we’ve beaten a really good team in the Champions League,” Hazard told the Chelsea website.

“We did well, from first to the end of the game. That means we are a good team, we have good players. We are very confident, trust me, but Man City are also playing well so it should be a good game. Two great teams, two great managers. We will see,” he added.

Hazard has been eased back into team by Antonio Conte after undergoing ankle surgery and following three substitute appearances in the league, he is expected to return to the starting line-up against City.

Test of character

Their 0-0 draw with Arsenal two weeks ago represented the only points they have dropped since their shock 3-2 defeat at home to Burnley on the season’s opening weekend. Morata netted a hat-trick in last weekend’s 4-0 success at Stoke City and his goal against Atletico means he has now found the net seven times in eight games.

City know a thing or two about scoring goals themselves, having no fewer than 16 on their last three matches against Liverpool (5-0), Watford (0-6) and Crystal Palace (5-0). Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Leroy Sane have amassed 23 goals between them in all competitions and midfielder Fernandinho has revealed attackers are engaged in a private goal-scoring competition.    

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