Preview: Sheffield United vs. Chelsea

Chelsea will be looking to maintain their impressive start to life under Thomas Tuchel when they take on Premier League basement boys Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

The Blues beat Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 on Thursday to keep their momentum going, while the Blades have also found some form over the past few weeks.
Jorginho’s first-half penalty, awarded for Eric Dier’s challenge on Timo Werner, proved enough for Chelsea to pick up a deserved victory at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

That first away win under Tuchel added to their 2-0 victory over Burnley and 0-0 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers – a seven-point return that the Blues can be happy with.

Perhaps most impressive of all, Chelsea have kept their opponents quiet in all three of those games and have yet to concede.

Indeed, Tuchel is the first Blues boss since Jose Mourinho’s first spell 17 years ago to keep a clean sheet in his first three matches in charge of the club.

However, after a disappointing end to Frank Lampard’s tenure, the West London outfit are still playing catch-up on the sides above them.

Chelsea sit sixth in the table heading into the weekend’s fixtures, four points behind fourth-placed Liverpool and a further seven points adrift of leaders Manchester City, who also have a game in hand.
Tuchel will just be hoping to keep putting wins on the board before focus switches to the cup competitions, with Barnsley and Atletico Madrid to come in the last 16 of the FA Cup and Champions League respectively.

Sheffield United also remain in the FA Cup, and in many ways that competition has helped revive the Blades’ campaign over the past month.

Chris Wilder’s men picked up a first win of the season against Bristol Rovers in round three on January 9 and followed that up with a first league victory since July against Newcastle United.

In fact, the Yorkshire side have now won five of their last seven matches in all competitions – a run that includes a famous victory away at Manchester United a couple of weeks ago.

United were 2-1 winners away at fellow strugglers West Bromwich Albion last time out, meanwhile, with that victory moving them to within 11 points of safety.

Wilder still has an almighty task on his hands to save his side from the drop, but their mission of avoiding relegation no longer seems the impossible task it did just a few weeks ago.

Sheffield United Premier League form: LWLWLW
Sheffield United form (all competitions): WLWWLW

Chelsea Premier League form: LWLDWW
Chelsea form (all competitions): WLWDWW

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