No more time for talking, speculating and predicting. The Premier League is finally back, and we have a colossal match to kick-start our season. Chelsea travel up to Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon to play Manchester United, kicking off at 4:30pm. Are you ready?
Chelsea managed to secure a 3rd place finish last year, as well as Europa League success, before Mauricio Sarri decided he had enough. Therefore, that gave club legend Frank Lampard the opportunity of a life time to coach the team he loves. He couldn’t purchase any players due to our transfer embargo, but fortunately we were able to call back many decent players on loan and now we get to see how life will be like post-Hazard. Come on you Blues!
Our Form: (- – – – -)
Our first competitive game of the season could be an incredibly competitive game, as we go to the buoyant Manchester United, who have just spent £80million on ‘slab head’. Our pre-season has been good in way of attacking, scoring many goals with Pedro scoring a majestic one himself. However, we have leaked many goals, and I hope these sort of errors escape from our game now it’s business time. We have yet to lose a match in pre-season, and can even boast a victory against Barcelona. Our latest pre-season match saw us draw 2-2 with Borussia Monchengladbach with us relying on penalty kicks to salvage the draw.
Our Opponents Form: (- – – – -)
Manchester United had a shocking pre-season tournament before last season, and it managed to have a telling effect as they continued to be awful in the league before Jose Mourinho was sacked in December. That doesn’t bode too well for us though, as they have had an impressive pre-season winning every game this year (including the last one on penalties). Wins were against the likes of Inter Milan, Tottenham and AC Milan.
Head to Head
Old Trafford has been a dawning prospect for most Premier League clubs over the past 20 years, but Chelsea have enjoyed more success there than anyone else (although Manchester City are charging in on us). Under the regime of Ancelotti, Mourinho and even Rafa Benitez we managed to get some impressive wins, but our recent away record against them has been quite poor – our last win there was in 2013. We have lost two of our last three visits, and last year we mustered an underwhelming draw. At home, Manchester United bow down to us, but we need to pick our performance up on the road. Frank Lampard won there last season with Derby, so surely we can match that success.
David Luiz has moved to Arsenal, so our defensive partnership will likely to Christiansen and Zouma, as Rudiger has only recently come back into training. In striking positions, Frank Lampard is expected to break new ground and give Tammy Abraham a Chelsea start, and its also possible that Mason Mount will also start. Pulisic is expected to be given his Premier League debut after signing from Borussia Dortmund.
Manchester United have lost Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan, so their strike force will consist of Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and potentially new winger Daniel James. Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bisakka are expected to play their debut.
First games of the season are harder to predict than the weather, but strangely I don’t feel too optimistic about this. I hope that I am wrong, but given our lack of transfers (which we had no control of), Eden Hazard leaving, and some key injuries, I believe getting a win at Old Trafford seems unrealistic. They also will be excited as they now have some players who can actually defend now. We took a 1-1 draw there back in April, and I’d gladly take the same. I will go for the same score line, with Tammy Abraham getting our goal. Come on you Blues!!