Sunday 14 July
Philadelphia Union U23 1:1 Chelsea U21
Only sketchy details available about this behind closed doors friendly. Philadelphia started eight of their first team and their speed and preparation told for an early goal. Alex Kiwomya equalised for us as we fielded two different teams in the first and second-half.
Monday 15 July
New York Red Bulls XI 0:2 Chelsea U21
Jon Swift and Alex Kiwomya scored the goals that put a cap on a good week in the States for the U21s. Much of the talk of the trip has been about the heat and importance of rehydration.
Milan Lalkovic will spend the first six months of the season at Walsall in League One, while Danny Pappoe will be with Colchester.
Wednesday 18 July
Singha All Stars 0:1 Chelsea
Welcome to a busy and ultimately successful start to life under Jose. A host of debuts in the first-half as Andre Schürrle and Kevin de Bruyne lined up behind Lukaku with Thomas Kalas and Wallace at the back. Frank Lampard felt something in the warm-up so he didn’t start. Ramires came in and did a double shift, alongside the returning Michael Essien.
Schürrle and de Bruyne both looked busy as we used width to get behind the Thais early on. Both had efforts and Lukaku bought the first save before Wallace was upended and Romelu smashed home the spot kick after an extravagant run.
De Bruyne and Ramires carried on into the second-half with the young Belgian looking every inch the playmaker we have been expecting. Eden Hazard had a spell of his own in response. Demba Ba was keen to show that Rooney was not needed but was unlucky. The mysterious Bertrand Traore eventually replaced De Bruyne, the Burkina Faso midfielder has been in work permit limbo for a while and we hope this means he can finally start his Chelsea career.
Overall, we were quick to close down, had some good penetration, made a few chances and kept everyone upright – a good work out.
News this morning breaks: Chelsea offered £10m and either Juan Mata or David Luiz for the petulant, fat one from Manchester United. Either Chelsea have just taken a huge step in alienating both Mata and Luiz in order to fail to land the overrated, overweight Rooney or we have lost the plot completely.
Chelsea later confirmed an offer had been made but denied that any players had been offered. Mourinho said Rooney was our only target this summer but that we would not be increasing the bid. Chelsea have increased our links with FC Harlem in New York. The U21 squad was present both launched an effort to offer soccer opportunities to inner city kids. And we added another date to the US tour as we will play AS Roma in Washington DC on Saturday 10 August. Biggest news of the day was the introduction of Bridget a lioness as a mate for Stamford – expect offspring by Christmas.
Thursday 18 July
Florent Malouda has joined Trabzonspor to repair his career. The way he was frozen out has been a depressing episode, so we wish him well.
The squad is now in Kuala Lumpur on the next leg of their pre-season. They play a Malaysia XI on Sunday and inevitably Rooney, Mata and Luiz cropped up in the press conference. Jose said he wouldn’t talk about Rooney but added that players who are not first choice with their club might miss the World Cup – whomever could he be talking about.
David Moyes probably didn’t have much practice at this with Everton.
Friday 19 July
Sam Walker will rejoin Colchester United until early January. Sam was at Cuckoo Farm at the end of last season and helped them stay in League One. He joins Daniel Pappoe, also on loan in Camulodunum.
Walker went straight into the team that drew nil each with Tottenham Hotspur where he made a string of good saves.
Tito Vilanova retired from Barcelona with continuing health problems. He was diagnosed with cancer of the parotid gland last year and we wish him well.
Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho has acquired a new nickname: the Godfather. The press were a little too eager to bestow the title from a discussion about his former assistants now managing in the Premiership and that, at 50, he is now one of the oldest managers in the league. He didn’t seem too displeased with the title.
Hackett will be dressing the Chelsea squad from now on as the club and the menswear brand announced a link-up.
Sunday 21 July
Malaysia XI 1:4 Chelsea
A strapping test from Malaysia and one achieved with only the worry of an injury to Kevin de Bruyne. Kevin went down in the act of scoring a rasping second goal, having set up the first. Mourinho later said that it appeared to be a meniscus problem rather than torn knee ligaments.
Bertrand Traore scored in the opening minutes from a de Bruyne cross before the Belgian doubled the tally. De Bruyne’s injury allowed a first-team chance for Islam Feruz, who looked busy and gelled well.
Romelu Lukaku has taken his opportunity to impress Mourinho on this tour and he capped a fine team move for the third before half-time.
It was all change at the half with only Eden Hazard and Marco van Ginkel playing on to the hour.
Josh McEachran came on for a late show and had some neat touches having missed the first match with a slight groin problem. Victor Moses scored our fourth before a late consolation for the hosts.
A firm bid from Liverpool for Ryan Bertrand has been turned down. The left-back is happy to bide his time and has been reassured that Ash’s ankle means he will feature this term.