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Manchester City take the train down to London for Chelsea showdown

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Full steam ahead in Manchester City's Premier League title tilt as they take the train down to London for Saturday night showdown with ChelseaManchester City travelled south by train ahead of Saturday's Chelsea clashPremier League leaders put their 15-game unbeaten start on the line against Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne weren't passed fit to make the squadPep Guardiola was animated making points to his coaching staff as they boarded their train at Manchester Piccadilly station 

Manchester City took the train down to London for Saturday's blockbuster clash with Chelsea as they aim to put further steam behind their Premier League title tilt.

Pep Guardiola and his squad were snapped boarding their transport at Manchester Piccadilly station on Friday afternoon for the two-hour journey to the capital.

City, who remain unbeaten after the first 15 matches of their title defence, currently enjoy a two-point advantage over closest challengers Liverpool and have 10 points on Chelsea.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola leads his staff and squad to their train as they travelled down to London for Saturday night's Premier League showdown with Chelsea

City players Ederson, Gabriel Jesus, Danilo, Fernandinho, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi make their way along the platform at Manchester Piccadilly 

John Stones makes his way to the train at Manchester Piccadilly as City travelled south

But if Chelsea recover from their recent setbacks against Tottenham Hotspur and Wolves to record a victory at Stamford Bridge, fresh life would be breathed into the title race.

City travelled to London without two star performers in Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne, with neither recovering their fitness in time for the match.

Argentina striker Aguero has missed their last two matches - the home win over Bournemouth last Saturday and the midweek success at Watford - with a muscle problem.

Belgian midfielder De Bruyne is nearing a return having been sidelined since early November with a knee problem.

Guardiola said that Saturday's match will come too soon for both players: 'Both cannot play tomorrow. Both will be back soon.'

An animated Guardiola makes a point to one of his coaches as they arrive at the station

City's Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho smiles as he walks into Piccadilly station on Friday

Leroy Sane is pictured on the platform as Manchester City travelled south by train

City currently have a two point lead on Liverpool and are 10 points ahead of Chelsea 

Though Chelsea have slipped back down the table following those two recent defeats, Guardiola knows it will still be a tough assignment at Stamford Bridge.

He said: 'Always Stamford Bridge is difficult. I've travelled there many times as a manager and won once - last season. Most of the time I lose there.

'They are a good side, a really good team. You see the level of people on the bench - they don't play regularly but they are excellent players. They are a real contender, an excellent team.

'How are they going to react after losing two games? I can imagine how intense, how aggressive and how committed they will be. That's why it's a good test for us, I will welcome that.'

Guardiola's opposite number Maurizio Sarri has spoken of City in complimentary terms ahead of the game, describing them as 'the best team in Europe, maybe the best in the world'.

City are aiming to preserve their unbeaten start to the Premier League season against Chelsea

Vincent Kompany wheels his luggage along the platform as City made the trip to London

Man City fixtures 

Premier League unless stated

Saturday Chelsea (A)

December 12 Hoffenheim (H)

Champions League group stage

December 15 Everton (H)

December 18 Leicester City (A)

EFL Cup quarter-final

December 22 Crystal Palace (H)

December 26 Leicester City (A) 

Guardiola was too modest to agree.

'Thank you but we are not the best,' he said. 'To be the best we have to win the titles and we did not win the titles to be the best in the world.'

Guardiola feels Tuesday's 2-1 victory at Watford, when City endured a nervy finish after dominating early on, underlines this point.

He said: 'We could have dropped two points in the last 10 minutes. After 2-0 we were not the best side. There are many things we can do better and tomorrow we have a very demanding test for us.'

Guardiola has been impressed by the work of Sarri so far in his first season at Chelsea.

He said: 'He needs time. Maybe they are not playing 90 minutes but when they play good for 50, 60, 70, 75 minutes they are excellent.'

 

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