Kante is 50/50 is play in this weekend’s biggest clash as he continues his recovery from a hamstring injury picked up while playing for France.
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte had been hopeful the midfielder would be fit to play against Roma on Tuesday but he declared himself not ready to return.
And without him Chelsea were convincingly beaten 3-0 by the Serie A side to top their Champions League group.
Conte also has injury concerns over his other midfielders Tiemoue Bakayoko, Cesc Fabregas and Danny Drinkwater.
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has been criticised for a defensive approach to games against Liverpool and Tottenham.
But Wilkins reckons United have a major opportunity to take all three points.
He told Sky Sports: “If [N’Golo] Kante is not fit I can see Mata coming into the situation because Jose must be looking at it having watched Chelsea in Rome the other night, they are struggling.
“And he has got the best possible chance of going to Stamford Bridge and clawing back three points which Manchester City got.
“He must feel they have every opportunity to win this game because Chelsea are lacking confidence, the players aren’t playing to their ability or to their strengths.
“And this is an opportunity for Manchester United to come to Stamford Bridge and take the game away from Chelsea.
“I can honestly see a Manchester United victory.”