The next Premier League season doesn’t begin until Saturday, August 14 but as soon as the first ball is kicked in the Community Shield, the English top flight football calendar officially opens.
Tomorrow we’ll see Manchester United compete against Chelsea (10am ET, Fox Soccer Channel) to see who will win the Community Shield silverware. Historically the game has usually been a hum-drum affair. Both teams obviously want to win the game. But the games are hardly ever played at a feverish pace. One exception was the 1974 Charity Shield (as the game was called then) featuring Liverpool against Leeds United (pictured above). It was feverish but also very dirty.
Having said that, the game usually is a massive confidence booster. After playing their preseason friendlies in the United States, Chelsea returned to England last summer and drew 2-2 in regulation time against Manchester United. The Blues then went on to win 4-1 on penalties. And that, without a doubt, was an important step for Chelsea as they then proceeded to carry that confidence into their 2009-10 Premier League season where they eventually became champions.
Let me add an important note. And that is that the Community Shield tomorrow will be live blogged on EPL Talk courtesy of Chris McQuade. So feel free to watch the game tomorrow and add your questions, comments and observations during the game on the homepage of EPL Talk.
And now, the poll. Who do you think will win the 2010 Community Shield? Chelsea or Manchester United?