A 2-0 win on the opening day of the season is extremely good. However, it is vital that Chelsea followed that up with another victory against today’s opponents Reading. It is always difficult to play against newly promoted teams in the opening few weeks of the season. Manchester City demonstrated this after they struggled to get past Southampton during the weekend.
The 2-0 win over Wigan might be great on paper, but there are still a lot of problems that needs to be addressed before they can be considered as real title contenders. The defence is still shaky for a number of occasions, while Chelsea’s inability or lack of interest in having possession of the ball after taking the lead could be dangerous.
Roberto di Matteo has developed a reputation for playing attacking and adventurous football. However, for some reason or the other, he has made Chelsea be extremely defensive in these last few months. Let us hope that we get to see an attacking style of football at home to Reading.
Roberto di Matteo has confirmed that Ramires is likely to be back in the starting line-up, while Oscar could play a much bigger part in the match. All eyes, though, will be on the star asset Eden Hazard, who was simply superb against Wigan. Gary Cahill is expected to play instead of David Luiz. Di Matteo said
“Ramires is fine, Marin is still out, so apart from his hamstring injury we are okay.
“We are slowly looking to integrate Oscar like we did with the other signings.
“You sometimes look at it and think you don’t want to change a winning team but it doesn’t always work like that. We will see for tomorrow night.”
The manager himself has admitted that Reading are extremely good on the counter-attack. They opened the season with a 1-1 draw against Stoke City.
The 2-0 win over Wigan has given the club a huge boost even at this early stage in the season due to the dropped points by the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham. It is vital that we sustain this advantage with another victory against Reading.
Possible team line-ups:
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Cech, Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Ashley Cole, Lampard, Mikel, Oscar, Hazard, Ramires, Torres
Reading (4-5-1): Federici, Gunter, Pearce, Gorkss, Harte, Leigertwood, McAnuff, Robson-Kanu, Guthrie, Pogrebniak, Le Fondre
Prediction: Chelsea to win 3-0
Kick-off: Stamford Bridge, 19:45 (BST)