Who: Manchester United vs Chelsea
When: Sunday, August 11th @ 11:30 am ET on NBC Sports
Where: Old Trafford
Line: Manchester United +117 | Draw +240 | Chelsea +240
The 2019-20 Premier League schedule kicks off in just one week!
After missing out on the top-four again last season, United will surely be looking to start this season on a banger. Chelsea, under new management again, aims to get Frank Lampard’s reign started on a positive note by putting on a show at the Theatre of Dreams.
Let’s take a look at the match, from projecting the starting XI’s to talking tactics.
Chelsea Likely Starting XI
Chelsea: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Zouma, Luiz, Emerson, Kovacic, Jorginho, Pedro, Barkley, Pulisic, Giroud.
Lampard will want to play his strongest XI for his first match. For me, that means he keeps Mason Mount on the bench to reserve his Premier League debut for a later date. N’Golo Kante is still injured, making him a doubt for the first game along with Antonio Rudiger.
Manchester United Likely Starting XI
Man U: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Smalling, Shaw, Pogba, McTominay, James, Lingard, Martial, Rashford.
So for Manchester United, the transfer business is heating up in the last few days of the window. They are being linked to multiple last-minute moves. I reckon they should nab a few players before it ends.
Harry Maguire’s looking closer to a potential $100million move. He should be slotted right into the backline for Smalling if he signs on, while Paulo Dybala could also get his debut if he agrees to join United.
Manchester United vs Chelsea match preview
Two sides on the road to reclaiming their status among the Premier League’s best, United vs Chelsea should serve up a special treat on Sunday. With both Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as well as Lampard opting for modern, attacking styles, I feel the game should be a high-octane battle.
United are on the road to redemption and after the end of last season’s debacle, they must pour their heart into the game to win back the confidence of the fans. Now, I know the last time these two met at Old Trafford it didn’t produce the most exciting contest, but United have looked a rejuvenated side in pre-season.
With the likes of Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Paul Pogba all looking to make a statement, we’ll probably witness them operating with a higher intensity to produce thrilling attacking football. But how the defence holds up against Chelsea’s electric attacking line is only something the footballing gods can answer.
Lampard hopes to replicate his heroics with Derby County last season by sneaking another famous win at Old Trafford. He’s already integrated an exciting philosophy at Chelsea. Watching him let the young players express themselves comes as a breath of fresh air.
All eyes will be on Christian Pulisic, who’ll be making his Premier League debut after an impressive pre-season campaign. The 20-year-old’s taken to Lampard’s style superbly, making him the player to watch out for. His sublime dribbling ability and clutch work in the final third will be decisive in winning the game for the Blues.
Manchester United and Chelsea have both enjoyed equally successful pre-season campaigns. I think they’ll cancel each other out in the first match. It should be an exciting, goal-scoring draw with plenty of drama to get the league started on a high note.