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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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Mikel would be scared to face Chelsea attack

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel says he would be running scared if he had line up against the awesome power of his side's multi-faceted attack.

A much-changed Chelsea side crashed out of the Carling Cup on Wednesday night but with five straight Premier League wins and a host of first-team players set to return, Mikel fears for Manchester City when the two sides meet on Saturday.

The Blues have smashed in 21 goals in their opening five league games and Mikel said: "If I was a defender playing against Chelsea, I would be very scared because you don't know where we're going to come from.

"We have Ashley Cole bombing forward on the left side all the time. So it is hard to know what to expect when we have all these players bombing forward all the time.

"If you look at our front three, none of them have a static position, they are all moving around. It is the same with the midfield although I tend to stay a little bit more because I cannot afford to leave that position.

"Playing that way helps us a lot while the other team is thinking about whether to follow Nicolas Anelka's runs, Frank Lampard or Michael Essien."

City boss Roberto Mancini could have only three fit defenders and may have to field an emergency left-back if Micah Richards fails to recover from injury.

Mancini is desperately short of defensive options and if Richards is ruled out by his hamstring injury, City will have only Pablo Zabaleta, Vincent Kompany and Kolo Toure as certain starters in their backline.

Meanwhile, Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti lost Salomon Kalou, Yossi Benayoun and Gael Kakuta to injuries in their Carling Cup defeat to Newcastle United and Frank Lampard has suffered a further setback in his rehabilitation from hernia surgery.

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