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Stuart Dalgleish 7th May 2011 - 14:21

Can Chelsea keep the dream alive?

Man Utd v Chelsea betting preview - Sunday 16:10 live on Sky Sports 1

A month ago Carlo Ancelotti was a dead man walking after Chelsea (21/10) crashed out of the Champions League to Manchester United (13/10, draw 11/5) and supposedly their last chance of silverware went with it.

Four successive wins later, coupled with United dropping points, and the Blues are right back in the hunt and can overtake their opponents by beating them at Old Trafford.

There's no reason why Chelsea can't take the points either, yes their two Champions League performances against the Red Devils were flat, but they have had much the better of these games over the last few seasons having won the last three league encounters.

All those wins have come under Ancelotti and the Italian has enjoyed a good success rate over Sir Alex Ferguson in his career, one of the best team performances I've ever seen was when his Milan side brutally dumped United out of the Champions League a few seasons ago with Clarence Seedorf and Kaka running the show.

A repeat of that 3-0 win for Ancelotti's Chelsea over United is a whopping 33/1 chance, how the Blues would love that added to their goal difference for the last couple of games, while also of course denting United's.

One man that's capable of making that sort of scoreline happen is Didier Drogba (7/1 first goal), the big Ivorian looks likely to lead the line this afternoon but it's who will partner him that remains a problem for Ancelotti.

Drogba has been a thorn in United's side on more than one occasion, as has Fernando Torres (15/2) but on current form you can't see what he's done to earn a starting place ahead of Nicolas Anelka (10/1) or Saloman Kalou (a great price at 14/1).

Ancelotti will really have to work on the Spaniard over the summer, it seems pretty clear that he was signed by Roman Abramovic rather than the manager much like Andrei Shevchenko but at £50 million pound he can't really be sat on the bench each week.

Ferguson has no such worries over misfiring strikers, the much maligned Dimitar Berbatov (7/1) is still the leading scorer in the division but it's entirely possible that he'll be watching this match from the bench.

Wayne Rooney (11/2) you would think will start after being rested for their Champions League match, Javier Hernandez (11/2) was on bench duty that day and is likely to be recalled to the starting line-up after having such a fantastic debut season in the Premier League.

Their first choice centre-backs Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic should return too, while Ryan Giggs (12/1) and Darren Fletcher (25/1) are available to the European hopefuls.

The only injury for Fergie to worry about is Owen Hargreaves, who of course is a long-term absentee anyway.

Both teams should be fresh with Chelsea not playing midweek and United making changes, they will really go hammer and tongs at each other and it wouldn't surprise me to see some feisty tackles flying in - over 6 cards in the match looks value at 11/10 and you can get a tempting 21/10 on a red card being issued in the game.

The Blues are scoring freely again (even if they're not all legitimate!) and I think goals could definitely be on the menu at Old Trafford; over 2.5 seems a good punt at 21/20 and a speculative bet on a 2-2 draw is worth a few quid at 16/1.

If you think someone will claim all three then we have a Match Winner offer which could just get you a bit more value - we've enhanced the price on either team coming from behind to win to 6/1, it's come in on more than one occasion for United at our cost this season and of course Chelsea did it last weekend against Tottenham.

It's a good price considering the history, but I'm going to sit on the fence with this one, the draw wouldn't really suit Chelsea but I think they'll get it, the draw no bet on the Blues could be a saver at 5/4.

 

 
 
 

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