FA Community Shield, Chelsea vs Manchester City: Open Thread

The time has arrived. The traditional fixture to kick off the 2012-13 English football season is upon us, and it’s the first FA Community Shield in six years that doesn’t feature Manchester United.

It’s been a wet early afternoon in Birmingham, the host city for today’s FA Community Shield between league champions Manchester City and FA Cup winners Chelsea.

Let’s jump right in to the team news from Villa Park:

Chelsea team: Cech, Ivanovic, Terry (C), Luiz, Cole, Lampard, Mikel, Ramires, Mata, Hazard, Torres.

Manchester City team: Pantilimon, Zabaleta, Kompany (C), Savic, Clichy, Milner, De Jong, Y Toure, Nasri, Aguero, Tevez.

Joe Hart is ruled out with a back injury that will also force him to miss England’s midweek friendly against Italy. Mario Balotell is out sick with pink eye. Joleon Lescott is also out injured.

On to the Chelsea team, I’m surprised that David Luiz is starting as he’s expected to play for Brazil in their mid-week friendly. Without a doubt, it’s Chelsea who has the luxury of fielding a full team against a Manchester City side that is slightly weakened due to injuries. Savic will be the one weakness that Chelsea will try to exploit.

For viewers in the United States, the match kicks off at 8:30am ET today on FOX Soccer.

Before, during or after today’s Community Shield, post your rants, raves, questions and observations in the comments section below.

21 thoughts on “FA Community Shield, Chelsea vs Manchester City: Open Thread”

  1. Bright start to the match. Let’s hope it continues!

    The one thing I notice about Fernando Torres (both today and this summer during the preseason friendlies) is that he sometimes slows play down when he receives the ball near the opponent’s penalty area. Instead of making the clinical pass or through-ball, he often prefers to knock it back or to the side, slowing down Chelsea’s attack and not capitalizing on Chelsea’s chances if another one of his colleagues is in a good space.

    The Gaffer

  2. The TV cameras aren’t doing Chelsea any favors. All I see are Manchester City supporters on three sides of the ground!

    The Gaffer

    1. I don’t think that is the TV cameras, it looks like it is a City home game, Chelsea fans looked like they haven’t bothered making the trip

  3. Andy Townsend is commentating on ITV in England he seems to think that flying in not getting the bal,l two footed, studs showing and catching the player! My god what has he gotta do for it to be red for him? Talk about bias!

  4. Have to say this tweet made me laugh:

    “@TopTopPundit: 22 bellends valued at £377m compete in a half empty stadium to win a novelty McDonalds plate. Up yours, the Olympics, football’s back.”

    The backlash these numpties are going to get over here when they start rolling around, diving and cheating will be ace, especially given that the Paralympics and the start of the season coincide. For the first time in a long time people over here have sat up and taken notice of real sports people and have been inspired not only by their achievements but their attitude and behaviour too.

    1. Paralympics? No one watches the Paralympics. After today the Olympics will be forgotten for another 4 years. It will be business as usual.
      Olympics make a nice change for a couple of weeks but nothing will change in the grand scheme of things.

      Politicians will be back to arguing, football will be back to number 1 and the country will be back to doom and gloom

      1. They’ve sold 2.1m tickets for paralympics events, and are predicting they’ll sell out for the first time ever.

        People are sick of the baggage that comes with football, they’re going to have to earn fans respect again I think. The big thing the olympics has over the premier league is the unpredictability factor, everyone knows at the end of it there will be the same 5-6 clubs dominating at the top of the table.

        In terms of the players it’s not about an attack on their ablity but their behaviour on and off the pitch. It’s stunning to think of the return GB has had on the £125m investment in the athletes taking part in the olympics, it makes you question why football and the premier league can’t match that with the billions of £s poured into English football.

        1. Yeah, just like all of the USA women’s soccer group games were sellouts… and the stadiums were only 30% full…

          It’s the sponsors who purchase a large chunk of these tickets.

  5. A strangely quiet and uncharacteristic game from Aguero. Tevez looks razor sharp. The team wasn’t to much near City’s strongest line up but they were the better team before the sending off and after. They looked good all round (maybe except Pantilimon).

    Chelsea looked OK with Torres taking his goal well, they showed heart and gave effort after going one man down. Hazard doesn’t look up to much on this showing though.

    Another pot for City but it’s still just a glorified friendly at the end of the day one you want to win but never the less not all that.

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