There’s nothing better than starting the preview match for the 2015-2016 English Premier League season than having a London derby at Wembley, with Arsenal and Chelsea facing each other in the 2015 Community Shield.
Rivals, derby rivals, with managers that hate each other, or at least make it seem that way through the media and their sideline interactions. Jose Mourinho doesn’t mind keeping himself busy on a number of fronts, feuding with managers close and far, engaging both Wenger and Rafa Benitez, who is managing Real Madrid, where Mourinho had three turbulent seasons.
Chelsea are the defending champions, playing in the Community Shield match for the first time since 2012 (as cup holders), losing 3-2 to Manchester City. For Arsenal, it’s their second consecutive appearance at Wembley in August, walking away with a very impressive 3-0 win over Manchester City a year ago, although once again, it didn’t translate into an impressive title run in the league.
We won’t see too many new faces on the pitch for both teams. Chelsea brought over Radamel Falcao on loan, signed Asmir Begovic from Stoke to be a backup goalkeeper and spent more money on “wonderkids” like Nathan and Danilo Pantic.
Arsenal did make one massive change by signing Petr Cech from Chelsea, which should be the most interesting point of focus in this match, but the rest of their additions were made for the academy and the reserves. Wenger was pleased with his squad last season, and thinks that with the right tweaks, he can finally see himself lifting a championship trophy at the end of the season, 12 years after the previous time.
Will Chelsea make more moves? Right now it’s hard to see. Jose Mourinho is complaining that other teams are trying to buy their way to the title. Obviously, like most of his remarks, it’s laughable, and it’s mostly to draw other managers into a futile debate. It’ll be more interesting how he makes not just champions out of his basically unchanged squad, but a group that can dominate in Europe.