Monday, August 06, 2007

Community Shield

Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea (United win 3-0 on penalties)

Yeah, I know the Community Shield is nothing more than a glorified friendly. But as I said last year when Liverpool won it, beating Chelsea and picking up some silverware is always a good way to start the season.

And just like last year, Chelsea are struggling with injuries -- including Terry and Drogba out with some vague problems, and Frank Lampard playing despite a broken toe. (Ballack and Shevchenko are out too, but somehow I don't think Mourinho really cares.) But United weren't exactly fielding their strongest lineup either. Two words: John O'Shea. Two more: Mikael Silvestre. Oy.

I'd say Chelsea did have more of the possession, but that's not exactly surprising, considering they were lined up in a Roma-style 4-6-0 and were able to clog up the midfield. Actually, it was more like 4-5.5-0, since as far as I could tell Lampard did absolutely nothing apart from saunter around with the armband and flub his penalty. How much of that can he blame on the broken toe, rather than just being a useless lump?

Malouda did look good for Chelsea; he basically handed Rio his ass for that goal. And SWP had a decent game too, although I think that's partly just due to Silvestre being crap, because although he had lots of the ball it didn't really come to anything.

As for United: high points (not that many) included flashes of that incisive, flowing style we saw last year, the defence looking more solid after giving up three goals against Inter, getting a first look at Nani (who's apparently Ronaldo v2.0), and Van der Sar turning into a penalty-stopping machine, which should hopefully boost his confidence going into this season. Low points: starting the game with six (six!) defenders, not getting to see any of the other new signings, and Tal Ben Haim being a thug and getting away with it. Also those stupid white strips down the back of their new kits. I really hate those.

Finally, a link to your Unintentionally Hilarious Photo Of The Day, courtesy of Malouda and SWP. It could only amuse me more if Ashley Cole was somehow involved.


weenie said...

LOL - great pic. Kinda cuddly, them Chelsea chaps! :-)

Anonymous said...

That made me chuckle out loud