Chelsea will kick off their pre-season schedule with a high-profile match against Wrexham in the USA tonight. Manager Mauricio Pochettino has been working hard with his players, and fans are eager to see them in action. This marks a new era for Chelsea, and they are starting their mega tour in the States with a game against the 2022/23 National League champions, Wrexham.
Wrexham, owned by Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, secured automatic promotion to League Two by defeating Notts County. With a large fan base in America, the atmosphere for this match is expected to be electric.
The Chelsea vs Wrexham match is scheduled for Wednesday, July 19th, at Kenan Stadium in North Carolina. Kick-off is set for 7:30pm local time, which translates to 12:30am on Thursday, July 20th in the UK. The 51,000-capacity stadium is completely sold out for this game.
Unfortunately, the match will not be televised by any UK broadcaster. However, fans can watch it on the 5th Stand App and Chelsea’s website. The 5th Stand App is Chelsea’s official app and can be downloaded for free on IOS and Android devices. TalkSPORT will provide updates throughout the game, and talkSPORT.com will have all the best reactions.
To listen to talkSPORT or talkSPORT 2 through the website, click HERE for the live stream. You can also listen via the talkSPORT app, on DAB digital radio, through your smart speaker, and on 1089 or 1053 AM.
In terms of team news, Chelsea has suffered a setback with Wesley Fofana sustaining another ACL injury that will keep him out for a long time. Benoit Badiashile and Armando Broja are also on the injury list. Reece James might miss the match due to illness. New signings Christopher Nkunku and Nicolas Jackson are expected to make an appearance, but Levi Colwill’s involvement is uncertain due to his participation with England in the Euro U21 Championships. Romelu Lukaku, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and Hakim Ziyech were left out of the squad.
Wrexham’s new signing, Will Boyle, could feature in the match.
The Chelsea squad for the 2023 USA tour includes goalkeepers Kepa Arrizabalaga, Gabriel Solnina, Lucas Bergstrom, Eddie Beach, and Jamie Cumming. Defenders Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell, Trevoh Chalobah, Marc Cucurella, Malo Gusto, Reece James, Levi Colwill, Bashir Humphreys, Ian Maatsen, and Alfie Gilchrist are also part of the squad. Midfielders Enzo Fernandez, Conor Gallagher, Carney Chukwuemeka, Andrey Santos, Cesare Casadei, and Lewis Hall, along with forwards Mykhailo Mudryk, Raheem Sterling, Noni Madueke, Angelo Gabriel, Diego Moreira, Nicolas Jackson, Christopher Nkunku, Mason Burstow, and Dujuan Richards complete the team.
In his first press conference, Pochettino acknowledged that he needs to earn the trust of Chelsea fans due to his past with Tottenham. He emphasized the importance of building a relationship with the fans and creating a special atmosphere. Pochettino believes that if the team and fans are united, they can compete and defeat top teams like Manchester City and Liverpool. He also expressed that his experience outside the Premier League has made him a better manager and person.
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Chelsea return to the fold on Saturday with a pre-season friendly against Wrexham and Pochettino takes on the Hollywood-backed side.
The game takes place at the Chelsea training ground in Cobham, Surrey, and kicks off at 3pm (BST).
New head coach Mauricio Pochettino is expected to use the friendly as a chance to get to know his squad and tinker with his planned starting team. The Argentinian knows his side will need to hit the ground running when the Premier League season starts next month.
Pochettino will have had his team hard at work in training but is eager to see how that translates into a game situation, against a side with ambitious plans for the future.
Wrexham is owned by Hollywood stars, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, with the pair recently taking over with the vision of restoring the club to its former glory. They have already injected significant funds into the club to improve the playing staff and facilities.
Saturday’s friendly will be the first chance they have to get an idea of how their new side plays and what they will be capable of in the early stages of their tenure.
For those that can’t make it to Cobham, the game will be available to watch online on Chelsea’s social media channels. The club will be live-streaming the game for fans across the world.
It will be an intriguing game to watch and it will be interesting to see how the sides match up. Tune into the game to see how much progress the Blues have made with the new manager at the helm.