Mark Lawrenson states his prediction for Chelsea FC v Man United
The Liverpool FC legend is tipping Manchester United to secure a 1-1 draw at Chelsea FC on Saturday afternoon
Mark Lawrenson is confident that Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho will use tactics that will successfully thwart Chelsea FC duo Eden Hazard and Jorginho at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon.
The Red Devils were 3-2 winners against Newcastle United at Old Trafford before the international break to end a winless run and ease some of the pressure on the Portuguese head coach.
Manchester United are in eighth place in the Premier League table and seven points adrift of Manchester City, Chelsea FC and Liverpool FC at the top.
Mourinho’s side can ill-afford to drop more points in the title race if Manchester United are to launch an unlikely challenge for the Premier League crown.
Hazard has scored seven goals in eight games in the Premier League this season to hit the ground running in his first season under Italian head coach Maurizio Sarri.
Jorginho has proven an instant success at Stamford Bridge and the former Napoli midfielder has helped Sarri to implement his desired style of play at the west London side.
However, former Liverpool FC defender Lawrenson expects Mourinho to concoct a tactical plan to hold Sarri and his Chelsea FC side to a draw at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon.
“I am going to go for a 1-1 here,” Lawrenson told BBC Sport. “Yes, I know – a big game and I go for a 1-1, what a shock.
“But the reason I see it being so tight is that I think we will see Mourinho park the bus, because he will not want to go back to Chelsea and be embarrassed.
“I know United recovered from 2-0 down to beat Newcastle before the international break, but they are not exactly on a good run of results.”
Lawrenson added: “This is a tricky spell for United, with Juventus and Cristiano Ronaldo coming to Old Trafford on Tuesday, but I don’t think Jose will be too bothered.
“If you look at where United have slipped up this season, for example losing at Brighton and West Ham and drawing at home to Wolves, then it has happened in games where they were expected to win.
“There is an argument that Mourinho prefers to play the better teams – his overall record in these kind of games is really good – which is why I think they will get a draw here.
“Chelsea are playing very well, with Eden Hazard and Jorginho particularly impressive, but Mourinho will be ready and set up to deal with them.”
Manchester United have a poor record at Stamford Bridge since former Chelsea FC manager Mourinho took over the reins at Old Trafford in May 2016.
Chelsea FC will be hoping to extend their unbeaten start to the season to nine games, which the Blues have managed to do on previous occasions when the Blues won the 2005-06 and 2014-15 titles.
However, a stalemate could well be on the cards given that the west London side have collected eight points from eight games agains their top-four rivals last term.
Mourinho’ side are looking to avoid equalling their worst-ever start to a Premier League season when the Red Devils have 13 points after nine games under his predecessor Louis van Gaal in 2014-15.