The inaugural game of the 2018-2019 season in England is here! This Sunday, FA Cup winners Chelsea will challenge English champions Manchester City in the Community Shield at the Wembley Stadium in London.
Chelsea come into this season with a new manager Maurizio Sarri, who almost won the Serie A from Juventus last season only for the Old Lady to clinch it right at the end. Pep Guardiola will be in his third season in England but will be playing in his first Community Shield just like Sarri.
Let’s take a look at how a combined 11 would look between these two.
Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois – The Belgian goalkeeper has been considered as one of best goalkeepers in the World for a while now. He is probably behind only De Gea and Neuer. Ederson, while solid last season, is yet to impress over a long stretch of time like Courtois. Add to that Courtois’ performance at the World Cup and he is the obvious choice between the two.
Right Back: Kyle Walker – The ex-Spurs player was already a good player in London. Pep Guardiola took him to the next level. Whether it’s as a right-back, right-wing-back or Right-Center-Back in a back three, Walker is a solid defender and also delivers the goods upfront with his marauding runs. Victor Moses is okay but defensively less sound.
Center Back: Kompany – The Manchester City captain has been one of the Premier League’s most consistent defenders for a long time now. Even after multiple injuries, he has always managed to come back strong. It looked like he would be a bit-part player under Pep for a while but he’s shown his worth in recent months.
Center Back: Azpilicueta – The diminutive Spanish defender is Chelsea’s most reliable and consistent player. He is very versatile as well, having the ability to slot in anywhere in defence. He is best used as the right or left center back in a five man defence but we pick him here as a center back to accomodate Walker and Alonso.
Left Back: Marcos Alonso – The Spanish left back bring a lot to the team offensively with his intelligent runs in the box, good delivery to the attackers and his majestic free kicks. Not to mention his height which is very useful on corners. There is a reason why Alonso is a Fantasy league favorite.
Defensive Midfielder: Ngolo Kante – Can we ever have a combined XI without this man? Our last 4 combined XIs have included the French midfield engine. Kante is indispensable for Chelsea, even more so than he was with France. Any team would be happy to have NG in their team.
Right Central Midfielder: Kevin De Bruyne – When Belgium played England for third place in Russia, English fans would have been salivating at the idea of having a player of the ilk of De Bruyne in their own team. None of the English midfielders can even come close to KDB. His passing range, set piece ability and goal creation potential gets him a place in the team.
Left Central Midfielder: David Silva – The Spaniard is now considered a veteran. Anybody who has been following the Premier League in the last decade would agree he is a must-have in midfield. We should consider ourselves lucky the little magician will be plying his trade in the EPL for atleast the next two seasons.
Left Wing: Leroy Sane – The German winger provided 10 goals and 15 assists last season as City rose to the top of the Premier League for the first time under Pep Guardiola. Sterling had an amazing season but is quite wasteful in general. Sane boasts better technique and footballing intelligence. Not to mention his crazy dribbles.
Right Wing: Eden Hazard – Do I even need to explain this one? Quite simply Chelsea’s best player. He is to Chelsea what De Bruyne is to City and what Lukaku is to United – coincidentally all three are from Belgium. He is the player who can make the difference at any moment in a game. When he’s at his best he’s unstoppable; even when he’s not at his best, he’s pretty good.
Center Forward: Sergio Aguero – Manchester City’s record goal scorer has to be our center forward. Gabriel Jesus has been preferred to Aguero at times but the Argentinian is still the main man at the Etihad. None of Chelsea’s strikers can compete with those two.
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