Manchester City and Chelsea will face each other in the Premier League later today, Saturday, May 8, at 17:30. After the Premier League game, the two clubs will meet again before the end of the season. This time around, it will be in the final of the UEFA Champions League on May 29.
Pep Guardiola who has been coaching Manchester City since 2016 will finally lead the club to the final of the Champions League for the first time in the history of the club.
The Spanish tactician will go against Chelsea’s coach, Thomas Tuchel who joined Chelsea in January this year and has turned the fortunes of the club around. Recall that Tuchel led Chelsea to knock Manchester City out of the semi-final stage of the FA Cup on April 17.
However, most fans believe that the Premier League game between the two coaches later tonight would determine how the Champions League final would turn out.
Manchester City might be confirmed winners of the Premier League if they beat Chelsea in the league game tonight and that might boost their confidence ahead of the Champions League final on May 29.
City are currently occupying the first spot with 80 points in 34 games, 13 points above second-placed Manchester United. While Chelsea are occupying the 4th spot on the league table with 61 points in 34 games.
The London club need to beat Manchester City tonight to further cement their place in the top four and also boost their confidence ahead of the Champions League final.
“If we played the final in one week, six days, it could be [a factor] but after tomorrow there are 21-22 days,” said Guardiola.
“Many things can happen. We just have to focus. There is not one thought about the final because we don’t have the Premier League in our hands. When we have the Premier League, then the focus will be on the Champions League…
“Always I have said the Premier League is the most important title. Financially for the club, maybe qualifying for the Champions League is the most important but there is no doubt this is the most important.
“The Champions League is so special, it is nice, but this means so many things. We have four games to get two points, one victory, and we are going to try to get it.
“There is no one thought about the final because we don’t have the Premier League in our hands. When we have the Premier League then the focus will be on the Champions League.”
While the manager of Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel said: “It was a nice morning Thursday to arrive and see everybody happy, but the schedule keeps us busy.
“The possibility they can become champions if they win against us will not lower their determination. They had one more day to recover, they don’t have to travel, it gives them a bit the upper hand. We saw how crucial that can be these days when they arrived at Wembley in the [FA Cup] semi-final and we had one more day.
“We have to deal with it. The final in Istanbul will be pretty unique no matter what the score is tomorrow.
“I try to prepare it in the normal way. The challenge right now is to get our tiredness out of the legs and out of our brains, to refocus – this is the target right now, to be in good shape tomorrow.”