Get ready for the MLS hype machine to go into overdrive tonight. The annual MLS All-Star Game is always an opportunity that MLS embraces, to brag about their progress, recognize their official sponsors and showcase their top players to the viewing public. And with tonight’s opponents being Chelsea, champions of Europe, the hype may go off the charts.
Chelsea is, so far, undefeated on their 2012 US summer tour after beating Seattle Sounders and drawing Paris Saint-Germain. With Chelsea’s fitness levels improving in the past week, I would expect Chelsea to come out firing on all cylinders to put the match out of reach of their American opponents.
Roberto Di Matteo says some players could play the whole game against the MLS All-Stars on Wednesday, as they continue their preparations in America for the forthcoming season.
“We will have two or more players that might play the whole game, and some others up to 60,” said the manager. “We have had many players coming back at different times due to the European Championship and we have to manage this and consider these factors in our friendly games we are going to play.
“We are looking for a good performance and good workout, to transfer all the things we have been doing in training,” Di Matteo continued. “It’s a team quite settled from last season and there won’t be radical changes overnight. We are trying to integrate the new players but it’s always nice to get a win, so we will try to do both.
“For us it’s important we continue our plan for this pre-season in terms of physical workout. We are also trying to implement a few changes in the way we want to play and will work on this.
“It’s too early to play our strongest team. We didn’t have a big amount of players starting on day one so you won’t see the team until the Community Shield or Premier League, but there are a lot of senior players involved [tonight].”
Fernando Torres, however, will not be involved in the game after only joining the Chelsea squad earlier this week.
For tonight’s friendly, post your rants, raves, questions and observations in the comments section below.