It is more than a week until Chelsea travel to Manchester United in a big Premier League clash but manager José Mourinho will certainly have an eye on the clash already.
The Premier League leaders have two games prior to meeting the record champions but will see it as a key game to keep momentum on their side following an excellent start to the season.
Chelsea go to Crystal Palace this weekend in a game they are expected to pick up three points. Mourinho side have only dropped two points in their first seven games of 2014-15 and that came in a 1-1 draw at defending champions Manchester City.
Three days later Chelsea go to Slovenia in the UEFA Champions League to face Maribor. The Premier League side are heavy favourites to pick up three points and move close to progressing from the group stage.
This Champions League game can be looked at as an opportunity for Mourinho to rest a number of key players as five days later they are at Old Trafford. Tickets to this game must entice fans of Chelsea football club.
José Mourinho has been fortunate with a lack of injuries to his side to start the season. Heading into this weekend’s game only Ramires and Didier Drogba are sidelined, with André Schürrle expected to return from a bout of flu that ruled him out of Germany’s 1-1 draw with the Republic of Ireland on Tuesday.
This gives the Portuguese manager a great opportunity to rate his squad which is one of the strongest squads in the league. There is a wealth of talent that have had limited action this season but can expect to play over the next couple of weeks when the fixture list stacks up.
Squad rotation would give Mourinho a fresh squad to face Manchester United in the Premier League next weekend. Manchester United haven’t been consistent this season but prior to this weekend they have won three of their last four and scored 11 during this run.
Currently we can expect an end-to-end shoot out between the two sides but Mourinho isn’t always prepared for those and likes to keep a solid defence first and foremost. This season, however, he has every reason to be confident in going for goals first with the way his attack has started.
The fixture offers a lot of importance for Chelsea to get a result – first to prove they are the best team in the league, secondly to maintain their great start to the season and thirdly to keep a big gap between them and the record Premier League champions.
José Mourinho won’t take Crystal Palace for granted but don’t be surprised if he sets his side to go for a quick start at Selhurst Park looking to kill the game in the first half and allow his players to take their foot off the gas with the Manchester United fixture in mind.