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Chelsea would like to better their achievements from last term as they gear up for the new season. RIshabh Ghai takes a look at the roster for Chelsea’s pre-season games.

Jose Mourinho’s home coming has been greeted with much delight by Chelsea fans as they hope 'The Special One' replicates the heroics of the 2004-05 and the 2005-06 seasons. Last season saw Chelsea win the Europa League, a competition which they weren't in contention for at the start of the campaign.

With seven trophies on offer, Chelsea were unsuccessful on all fronts in a season where Roberto Di Matteo was sacked and Rafael Benitez was named the interim manager.

Mourinho has a lot to do if he has to reclaim the Champions League title and his first step would be to assess his squad in the pre-season.

Back to work from 8th July


After having played a total of 69 games in the previous season, Chelsea begin their preparation on 8th July. Earlier scheduled to begin work on 3rdJuly, the Chelsea new boss, Jose Mourinho, gave the weary players an extra five days off.

The training sessions would be looked at as an opportunity for the Chelsea boss to get to know the new faces at the club.

 

Pre-Season Friendlies

I
Chelsea v/s Singha All-Stars
Date: 17th July, 2013

Venue: Rajamangla National Stadium, Bangkok

Kick Off:

18:30 IST

14:00 BST

13:00 GMT

About the opposition:

Singha All-Stars comprises of the best players plying their trade in the Thai Premier League - Thailand’s elite football division. They will be managed by Dr. Vichit Yamboonruang, the director of the Thai Premier League, and assisted by head coach and former Thailand international Piyapong Pue-on.

 

II
Chelsea vs Malaysia XI
Date: 21st July, 2013

Venue: Shah Alam Stadium, Kuala Lampur

Kick Off:

19:15 IST

14:45 BST

13:45 GMT

About the opposition:

Having already played against the Premier League bigwigs, Arsenal and Manchester United, last term, the Malaysian XI side would have a fair idea of how to go about the proceedings. Malaysian XI is a team which represents the Malaysian League in friendly exhibition matches. It is formed of the top players plying their trade in the league.

 

III
Chelsea vs BNI Indonesia All-Stars
Date: 25th July, 2013

Venue: Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Jakarta

Kick Off:

19:00 IST

14:30 BST

13:30 GMT

About the opposition:

The BNI Indonesia All-Stars shall consist of several national team players. There is also a talk of giving the U-23 national side a chance to play in the said game though a final decision is yet to be taken on the matter.


IV
Chelsea v/s Inter Milan
Date: 1st August, 2013

Venue: Indianapolis's Lucas Oil Stadium, USA

Kick Off:

05:30 IST

01:00 BST

00:00 GMT

Chelsea’s last string of pre-season matches takes place in the International Champions Cup. The tournament comprises of eight teams who face each other in a knockout format. The teams that will be participating this year will be the Italian giants Inter Milan, AC Milan and Juventus accompanied by the two Spanish sides Real Madrid and Valencia. Everton, Chelsea and Los Angeles Galaxy complete the list of participants.

Chelsea’s first match will be against Inter Milan and depending upon the result they could either progress (with a win) to face the winners between the AC Milan and Valencia. The timings of the semi-finals and the finals are not yet announced.

 

Chelsea

Chelsea's Man to Watch - Andre Schurrle

Having scored a total of 18 goals in 65 games for Bayer Leverkusen, Schurrle possesses the talent to be one of the bests in the Premier League. His preferred position is that of a secondary striker.

However, he can play on either flank as well. With blistering pace and trickery in his locker, the 22 year-old German could be the answer to Chelsea’s striking woes should they choose to deploy him in that role.

Not only does he have an immaculate eye for goal, Schurrle is also an aerial threat. His playmaking skills could also be pivotal for Chelsea as he has the ability to turn from being the beneficiary to a benefactor. A team player, Schurrle is a perfect package which Chelsea have got.

 

 What the Bench-warmers need to do...

With a prolonged season last year, it would be fair to say that most of the Chelsea players received plenty of game time. However, there were some who, in spite of getting the opportunities, failed to shine. The likes of Ryan Bertrand and Oriol Romeu need to up their game if they want to feature in the first team.

Victor Moses could also face stiff competition from Romelu Lukaku. Competition for places is stiff in this Chelsea side but if they aim to reclaim their lost Champions League and Premier League glory, the fringe players will also have to put their hands up to take up challenges.

 

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