Date: 10th August 2019 at 6:46am
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There are a number of question marks over who Chelsea boss Frank Lampard will select to start his first ever competitive game in charge of the club where he made his legendary mark.

Now with David Luiz departing to local rivals Arsenal, one conundrum lies at centre-back while the other position in question is in attack where any one of Tammy Abraham, Olivier Giroud and Michy Batshuayi could start and lead the line.

In midfield, Lampard has to run with the duo of Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic – even if N’Golo Kante is fit.

Not many would have thought that was a possibility last season as both players received their fair share of critics – Jorginho was dubbed ‘Sarri’s son’ as he was frequently selected under ex-boss Maurizio Sarri even if he had the odd clanger whilst Kovavic was labelled a ‘nothing player’ at one stage last campaign.

Both have been the standout performers during pre-season which has also seen Kante absent for most parts of it.

And through no fault of his own, the Frenchman could become a victim because of his time on the sideline. I would be surprised to see the little box-to-box magician feature on Sunday as he’s not had any game time whatsoever since playing through injury in the Europa League final.

Kovacic and Jorginho have formed quite the partnership in his absence and if that can correlate to results in the Premier League then there would be no reason to drop either one of them. The double-pivot in the 4-2-3-1 system gives Lampard a nice balance with Jorginho the deeper of the two, it allows Kovacic freedom to travel into the attacking third more often than not.

The fact that these two have worked so well together this summer is a good sign and one that can be relied on meaning the Chelsea boss can focus on who should be starting in the other areas. If the midfield was a problem too then Lampard would be looking to tinker his side continuously throughout the season and that’s just not what’s wanted.

Manchester United have had quite a poor transfer window even with the world record £80m signing of Harry Maguire – they look lightweight up top following the exit of Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan so it has the potential to be a game that Chelsea can win.

This double-pivot partnership has all the attributes to counterbalance a midfield which is likely to include Paul Pogba and the inexperienced Scott McTominay.


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