Frank Lampard has named both Kai Havertz and Timo Werner in Chelsea’s starting lineup for tonight’s match.
The Stamford Bridge club face Brighton at the Amex Stadium in their opening Premier League game of the season in what is tipped as a new era for the Blues after big summer spending.
Chelsea finished fourth in the league last term, but are expected to challenge for the title after also adding Ben Chilwell and Hakim Ziyech, neither of whom are involved in their first match of the season.
Meanwhile Kepa Arrizabalaga gets the nod in goal, despite ongoing rumours that Chelsea are set to sign a new No. 1, while Jorginho is captain as he starts in midfield.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Mason Mount and Reece James are all named in the XI, with Cesar Azpilicueta among the substitutes alongside the likes of Tammy Abraham and Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Christian Pulisic is injured and unavailable, while Mateo Kovacic is suspended from last season.
Meanwhile, Brighton start former Chelsea youngster Tariq Lamptey at right-back, the returned Ben White in the centre of defence and new signing Adam Lallana in an attacking midfield role.
Fellow new arrival Joel Veltman is on the bench for Graham Potter’s side.
Brighton XI: Ryan; Lamptey, White, Dunk, Webster, March; Bissouma, Alzate, Lallana; Trossard, Maupay.
Chelsea XI: Kepa; James, Christensen, Zouma, Alonso; Jorginho, Kante; Mount, Loftus-Cheek, Havertz; Werner.
GUNNERS MIDFIELDER SET FOR SERIE A
United’s top-four rivals Arsenal look ready to loan out Lucas Torreira.
The Uruguayan hasn’t been able to establish himself under Mikel Arteta and he’s heavily linked with a move to Italy.
According to the Guardian, he’ll be heading to Torino or Fiorentina.
SEVILLA SIGN LEFT-BACK TO END REGUILON INTEREST
Manchester United have been linked with Sergio Reguilon all summer, though the Real Madrid man was thought to have an option to go back to Sevilla on loan again, too.
The Andalucian side have now signed Sporting CP’s Marcos Acuna, though, which essentially ends their need to bring Reguilon back.
Perhaps one step closer to a move to Old Trafford for the Spanish defender.
MERSON BELIEVES UNITED SHOULD HAVE GONE FOR KANE
A prolific No. 9 was the big requirement for Manchester United to take a step forward, says Paul Merson, and Harry Kane was the target they should have prioritised.
Talking to Sky Sports, Merson said Kane should be actively looking to move on to enhance his chances of silverware.
“He’s one of the best in the business at scoring goals, but he’s scoring 30 goals a season and not getting chances to win trophies, what’s the point in being there?
“Manchester United are crying out for a goal-scoring center-forward, and if I’m being honest I think Man City are too.
“I just don’t understand why there isn’t more talk about a team signing Kane.”
UNITED CONSIDER BALE LOAN MOVE
Should Manchester United fail to secure Jadon Sancho, they may look to sign Gareth Bale from Real Madrid – but only on a loan deal.
United have been talks with Borussia Dortmund all summer regarding the transfer of Sancho, but as of now the Premier League outfit are refusing to meet Dortmund’s €120m valuation of the winger.
This has led United to look at other alternatives, such as Douglas Costa of Juventus, Ivan Perisic of Internazionale, and Bale.
Sky Sports’ Manchester United reporter James Cooper states a deal for Bale isn’t out of the question:
When I spoke to someone this morning about Gareth Bale, it wasn’t ‘this is nonsense, forget Gareth Bale’. He’s certainly an option for Man Utd but under those restrictions – a loan deal rather than a permanent deal.
SHERWOOD BELIEVES UNITED SHOULD MAKE GREALISH MOVE
Former Blackburn and Tottenham player Tim Sherwood believes that Manchester United should make a move for Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is known to be an admirer of the 24-year-old, but it’s been thought that Villa’s £80m asking fee for the midfielder put United off making a serious offer.
United instead bought Donny van de Beek from Ajax for £40m, but Sherwood maintains they should also consider Grealish, telling Sky Sports:
When teams back off, that’s when Manchester United have struggled, but that was until [Bruno] Fernandes came in.
Fernandes could find the key to the door and open teams up. Van de Beek can do that as well, he makes runs and scores goals.
But I would also go for Jack Grealish, he can open the door, he’s another Fernandes and gives them another quality that they need.”
SMALLING MISSES UNITED PHOTOSHOOT AS HE AWAITS ROMA DEAL
Manchester United defender Chris Smalling has missed the club’s photoshoot as he holds out on a permanent move to Roma, reports the Daily Mail.
Smalling enjoyed a season-long loan spell in the Eternal City last season, and reportedly wants to return to the Italian capital.
Roma have yet to meet United’s £20m asking price for the 30-year-old defender, with it being reported today in the Rome-based Il Messaggero that the club’s latest offer is €9.5m and €2m in bonuses.
It remains to be seen if a deal will be concluded, but the Daily Mail reports that Smalling missed the club’s TV photoshoot as he remains hopeful of a permanent move away.
The Daily Mail also states that the England international is training away from the United squad, as he awaits further developments.
UNITED DECIDE NOT TO BRING DEPAY BACK
Manchester United have opted against bringing back former attacking midfielder Memphis Depay, as he closes in on a move to La Liga giants Barcelona.
Depay joined United in 2015 but lasted only two seasons at Old Trafford before moving to the Ligue 1 side Lyon.
Depay has fulfilled his potential in France, and is now closing in on a move to Barca.
Talksport states that United have the option to buy Depay back, having inserted a buy-back clause in the deal that took him to Lyon. However United don’t seem willing to activate it, as they focus on securing the signing of Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.
DORTMUND BOSS MAINTAINS SANCHO IS STAYING
Borussia Dortmund boss Lucien Favre maintains that Manchester United target Jadon Sancho will stay at the club this season.
Sancho has been at the centre of a tug-of-war between the two clubs all summer, but at present an agreement can’t be reached.
Dortmund’s asking price for the England international is €120m, a figure United aren’t willing to meet.
Now Favre, speaking to Swiss publication Keystone-SDA, states that the winger is staying put.
“We need him, no question. Everyone is happy that he stayed,” said Favre.
“We don’t need to talk long about his qualities – they are enormous. He scores and sets up a lot of goals and can often make all the difference,” he continued.
Sancho scored 17 times and laid on 16 assists for Dortmund last season.
UNITED TO FACE MORE COMPETITION FOR SANCHO SHOULD THEY WAIT
Manchester United stand to face increased competition for Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho should they wait another year, reports ESPN.
United have been involved with talks with the Bundesliga side throughout the summer, but the stalemate has yet to be broken.
Dortmund are holding firm on their asking price of €120m, a figure United aren’t willing to meet.
It’s believed that the Premier League side have agreed personal terms with Sancho.
ESPN report that should United wait a year, they’ll find increased competition to sign the England international from the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Liverpool.
CONTE TO GIVE UNITED TARGER PERISIC A CHANCE
Internazionale coach Antonio Conte is prepared to give outcast Ivan Perisic two weeks to impress before deciding whether to sell the Croatian.
Perisic spent last season on loan at Bayern Munich, where he won the Champions League and Bundesliga.
The Croatian international has been linked with Manchester United in recent days should moves for Jadon Sancho or Gareth Bale fail to materialise.
However Gazzetta dello Sport claim Inter boss Conte is prepared to give Perisic two weeks to win him over before deciding his future, along with former Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan.
Perisic was heavily linked to United several years ago, but were rebuffed in their efforts to sign him by the Italian side.
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