Chelsea kick off the brand new Premier League season at home to Swansea City on Saturday evening at Stamford Bridge.
Jose Mourinho’s team won the league at a canter last season, managing a eight-point gap over second placed Manchester City, but the Blues are expected to face a strong challenge from their nearest rivals this time around.
Chelsea have had a quite summer transfer, but the Blues did make sure they sign the right profile of players that adds quality and depth to the side. Strike department was bolstered by the signing of Radamel Falcao, who fared miserably last season at Manchester United. Mourinho was ready to take the gamble on the Colombian striker, who may not serve as the first choice at Chelsea, but will definitely add depth to the side.
Similarly, the loss of Petr Cech has been covered up by the arrival of Asmir Begovic from Stoke City. If Chelsea can find an able replacement of Filipe Luis and add another central defender to the ranks before the transfer window slams shut, there’s no reason why the Blues cannot successfully defend their title.
Swansea have been busy in the transfer market as well. Gary Monk has brought in several new faces – goalkeeper Kristoffer Nordfeldt, defender Franck Tabanou, forward André Ayew and striker Éder.
The Swans were exceptional in Monk’s full season in management, as they finished eighth, and smashing their previous best points total in the League. They produced some scintillating football, and managed to get exciting results against top teams like Manchester United and Arsenal. New signing Ayew would add quality to the squad, but the form of Jonjo Shelvy and Bafetimbi Gomis would prove to be crucial for Swansea’s progress this season.
Date: Saturday, 8th August, 2015
Time: 17.30pm BST
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Live Stream: NBC Sports
Chelsea vs Swansea: Team News
Chelsea Team News
Jose Mourinho has expressed concerns over the fitness of Spain international Diego Costa. The former Atletico Madrid striker missed out last weekend’s FA Community Shield with a hamstring injury and he is doubt for the season opener as well. Apart from that, the Chelsea boss is blessed with a healthy squad and he shouldn’t have any problems in picking up a strong first XI.
Swansea Team News
Gary Monk, like his counterpart, will start the season with virtually a clean bill of health. There’s only a little doubt over the fitness of centre-back Jordi Amat, but apart from that, he has a fully fit squad to chose from
Chelsea vs Swansea Predicted Lineups
Possible Chelsea starting lineup (4-2-3-1): Courtois; Terry, Cahill, Ivanovic, Azpilicueta; Matic, Fabregas; Hazard, Oscar, Willian; Remy
Possible Swansea starting lineup (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Tabanou, Williams, Fernandez, Naughton; Cork, Sung-Yueng; Ayew, Sigurdsson, Dyer; Gomis
Chelsea vs Swansea: Key Stats
23 – The defending Premier League champions have never lost the opening game the following season (20 wins, 3 draws).
25% – Five of Diego Costa’s 20 Premier League goals last season came against Swansea City.
100% – Chelsea have won all four previous Premier League matches versus Swansea at Stamford Bridge, scoring 11 goals in the process.
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