Community Shield Preview: Chelsea v/s Manchester City
The long wait is finally over. After a bunch of pre-season games, long travelling and International duties for few the new season finally kicks off with the usual season opener- FA Community Shield. English Premier League champions take on the Champions of Europe for the Community Shield in a match that is assured to be a classic.
For City, last season ended their long long wait for a Premier League title when they won the title in the most fascinating way possible scoring two goals in stoppage time. City who lost the Community Shield to fierce rivals Manchester United last season will be hoping they can better that result this time around.
Chelsea enter this competition as the FA Cup winners beating Liverpool 2-1 at Wembley last season. This game will mark Chelsea’s sixth appearance in the game since 2005 but they have only won two of the five previous appearances.
The match will be played at Villa Park in England because Wembley is being used for the Olympics. The last time Villa Park hosted the Community Shield final was back in 1972 which is a significant day for Man City as they won the Community Shield that year. Certainly history favors the Manchester Club.
Manchester City: Manchester City have a very similar squad to what they had last season with no new additions so far only players who were out on loan have re joined the club. City may be without the services of David Silva and Mario Balotelli as they have been given extended leave after their involvement in the European Championships. Mancini might start Tevez up front with Aguero and Nasri might be called up to fill in for David Silva.
Chelsea: A lot has changed for Di Matteo’s side since the 19th of May. The club is now without the services of Didier Drogba,Salomon Kalou and Jose Bosingwa (All 3 of them started against Bayern Munich in the final). So how have Chelsea replace them? Well, Chelsea have added Marko Marin,Eden Hazard,Throgan Hazard and Oscar to their roster so far, although I don’t expect Throgan to get any game time in this game but Eden will surely be in the playing XI. Chelsea will be without Oscar as well who is with Brazil but Chelsea might welcome back Juan Mata and Romeu due to Spain’s early exit. With new signing Marko Marin doubtful for the clash, Juan Mata may be called to replace him
Expectations will be high when both teams step out at Villa Park for the curtain raiser. I honestly believe this game is City’s to lose. Not many changes made to their squad and the players have gelled up well.