SETTING THE SCENE: Boxing Day is traditionally one of the biggest days in the Premier League calendar and this year looks no different with 18 of the 20 teams in action.
Top of the table Manchester City face a tough test against Leicester, Liverpool host Leeds, while Aston Villa and Chelsea have a rich Boxing Day history and their match at Villa Park is another to keep a close eye on.
Since the beginning of the Premier League era in 1992 Boxing Day, has proved the perfect Christmas gift for Manchester United, who have the best record of any team on the 26th of December. The Red Devils have played 27 times and won a remarkable 21 of those fixtures, a 78 percent win rate.
It comes as no surprise then that United also have the best scoring record, notching 71 goals in those games at an average of 2.6 goals a game.
However, they will have to wait a year for the chance to extend those records as their game against Newcastle is the only Premier League fixture on the 27th of December.
Surprisingly Dimitar Berbatov is United’s highest scoring player on Boxing Day with 5 goals, some way short of the record of 9 held by ex-Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler.
Despite spending the majority of his time with Liverpool, where he made 236 starts and scored 120 goals between 1993 and 2001, Fowler only netted 3 times on Boxing Day for the Reds. He scored a further 4 goals with Leeds and 2 with Man City.
The most goals in a fixture came in 2007, when Chelsea and Aston Villa played out an incredible 4-4 draw at Stamford Bridge. A pulsating match saw three players sent off – two for Chelsea and one for Villa – with Gareth Barry scoring a 90th minute penalty to snatch a draw for the visitors.
Aston Villa actually hold the record for most Boxing Day dismissals, after Tyrone Mings was sent-off in the Villans’ 2020 win over Crystal Palace, which took their total number of reds to 4.
Boxing Day is day to savour for any football fan and if it’s goals you want to see Old Trafford (60) and Stamford Bridge (48) are the grounds to head to.
However, despite that fact it is Man United and Chelsea that share the record for most keeping most Boxing Day clean sheets with 12 each.