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Community Shield

  • 12 August 2012
  • • 13:30
  • • Villa Park, Birmingham
  • Referee: K. Friend
  • • Attendance: 36394
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Chelsea - Manchester City Preview: Title rivals kick-off campaign with Community Shield clash

Managers Roberto Mancini and Roberto Di Matteo will both be seeking the third piece of silverware of their tenures with their respective clubs when they meet at Villa Park

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

CHELSEA

Cech
Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Cole
Lampard, Mikel, Meireles
Ramires, Torres, Hazard

MANCHESTER CITY

 
Hart
Zabaleta, K Toure, Lescott, Kolarov
Y Toure, De Jong
A Johnson, Tevez, Nasri
Aguero

Juan Mata is unlikely to feature for Chelsea following his involvement at the Olympic Games, so Roberto Di Matteo could opt for a 4-3-3 formation with Raul Meireles joining Frank Lampard and John Obi Mikel in midfield.

Ramires and Eden Hazard are likely to support Fernando Torres in attack, while the Italian will decide between Gary Cahill and David Luiz at the back. Marko Marin will miss the match with a hamstring injury.

Roberto Mancini is still yet to field anything like his first-choice line-up during pre-season, making it difficult to predict how strong a team he will select for this match.

The match fitness of some of their Euro 2012 competitors, such as Samir Nasri and Nigel de Jong is in doubt, while Vincent Kompany is struggling with a calf injury and is unlikely to be risked, so Kolo Toure could feature at centre-back.

David Silva and Mario Balotelli went all the way to the final with their countries in Poland and Ukraine and will therefore likely be kept among the substitutes.

Yaya Toure, Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez have all seen plenty of pre-season action and should be involved in the starting XI, but Gareth Barry is injured and Micah Richards will not play after representing Great Britain at the Olympics.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Manchester City suffered a 3-2 defeat at the hands of rivals Manchester United in last year's Community Shield, but have won the prize three times – in 1937, 1968 and 1972.
  • Villa Park, the home of Aston Villa, will host this year's tie as Wembley is in use as part of the Olympic Games in London.
  • The match will be played away from a national stadium – either one of the two incarnations of Wembley in England or the Millennium Stadium in Wales – for the first time since 1973 when it was played at City's former ground, Maine Road.
  • Maine Road hosted the match five times in all, while the game has been played at Chelsea's Stamford Bridge more than any other stadium bar Wembley.

  • Chelsea beat City at home in the Premier League last season, but suffered defeat at the Etihad Stadium by the same 2-1 scoreline.

  • Overall, the Blues have the edge in the head-to-head statistics, having enjoyed 55 wins to City's 43, with 36 matches between the two sides resulting in a draw.

  • Chelsea have won the Community Shield four times, with three of those victories coming since the turn of the millennium in 2000, 2005 and 2009. They also won in 1955.

  • Roberto Di Matteo, taking charge of his first game as permanent manager, is the fourth Italian to take the reins at Stamford Bridge after Carlo Ancelotti, Claudio Ranieri and Gianluca Vialli.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Petr CechGoalkeeper
3Ashley ColeDefender
2Branislav IvanovicDefender
23David LuizDefender
26John TerryDefender
8Frank LampardMidfielder
12John Obi MikelMidfielder
7RamiresMidfielder
-Thorgan HazardMidfielder
17Eden HazardMidfielder
9Fernando TorresStriker
8Juan MataStriker
21Ross TurnbullGoalkeeper
24Gary CahillDefender
-Ryan BertrandDefender
-Michael EssienMidfielder
-Raúl MeirelesMidfielder
15Daniel SturridgeStriker
-Lucas PiazonStriker
30Costel PantilimonGoalkeeper
5Pablo ZabaletaDefender
15Stefan SavicDefender
4Vincent KompanyDefender
13Aleksandar KolarovDefender
7James MilnerMidfielder
34Nigel De JongMidfielder
8Samir NasriMidfielder
42Yaya Touré Midfielder
10Carlos TévezStriker
16Sergio AgüeroStriker
64Eirik JohansenGoalkeeper
22Gael ClichyDefender
4Kolo ToureDefender
11Adam JohnsonMidfielder
62Abdul RazakMidfielder
21David SilvaStriker
10Edin DzekoStriker
Players to Watch
Eden Hazard
Eden Hazard
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 17
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
In the absence of Mata, Hazard will be relied upon to be Chelsea's main creative force in his first competitive match for the club. The pressure on the two-time Ligue 1 player of the season is partially of his own making and now he must start proving that he is worth the mammoth £32 million fee the Blues splashed out to secure his services from Lille.
Yaya Touré
Yaya Touré
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 42
Games Goals YC RC
1 0 0 0
Simply enough, the man for the big stage. Toure will not get the chance to shine – yet again – at Wembley this year, but in addition to his consistency over a league campaign, the Ivorian remains the man to rely on in one-off fixtures with medals at stake. City will need his drive to be more present than ever, particularly given their failure so far during the transfer window to add depth to their central midfield ranks.
Prediction
Much depends on the strength of the team fielded by Roberto Mancini, but Chelsea, regardless, look more likely to send out a settled XI that has built-up its fitness over pre-season and that could allow them to find some rhythm in their play earlier on in this match. They seem to have had a smoother ride in dealing with the challenges thrown up by their players' involvement at Euro 2012 and the Olympic Games than their opponents on Sunday.
Editor's Prediction

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