Manchester United spoiled Frank Lampard’s managerial debut in the Premier League when they ripped Chelsea apart by scoring four goals at Old Trafford.
Barkley and Mount who were Chelsea’s standout performers in the pre-season were both given starts with Barkley playing down the left-wing. He was rather ineffective from that position and couldn’t get moving with Tammy Abraham as the striker. Kante who wasn’t match fit was on the bench alongside Christian Pulisic and Giroud.
Chelsea started brighter of the two teams as they dominated possession and attack in the first ten minutes. Tammy Abraham was unlucky when his shot in the 4th minute hit De Gea’s far post. He should have had a second when Azpilicueta’s low cross went across United’s open goal.
United sat back fending off the visitors but made quick breaks whenever possible. One such break caught Chelsea on the trail when Kurt Zouma clumsily brought down Marcus Rashford in the 18-yard box which the England international converted to give United the lead against the run of play.
United gathered some momentum after the goal and moved further up the field but Chelsea kept them in check and threatened to score three before the break which they were unlucky not to when Barkley’s shot was blocked and Emerson’s hit the post and then the bar.
Chelsea who should have been 3-1 up at halftime went 1-0 down much to their misfortune.
Both teams were unchanged at halftime and Chelsea continued their momentum in attack when they won a corner within 30 seconds of the restart. Emerson had another powerful shot which De Gea parried away.
Christian Pulisic made his Premier League debut when he came off the bench near the hour mark to replace Ross Barkley. Seven minutes later United had their second when Anthony Martial put the ball through the legs of Kepa.
Just as when Olivier Giroud was about to come on in place of Abraham, Rashford added a third collecting a fine ball from Pogba to slot past Kepa.
Kante received some important game time ahead of the UEFA Super Cup match against Liverpool on Wednesday when he replaced Jorginho for the final 20 minutes.
Chelsea conceded a fourth when United debutant Daniel James scored off a swift counter-attack which deflected off Emerson but nevertheless got a dream debut goal.
Mount who played a good part throughout the game had one last shot on target when he hit the ball towards the bottom left corner which De Gea held on to.
Chelsea suffered their heaviest defeat against Manchester United in 54 years and will have to sort their defence out very soon. Lampard would have dreaded this start to the campaign but the alarm bells aren’t going out anytime soon. He is much more than a manager who lost 4-0 to United and the fans understand that. How he takes the team from here has to be seen in a few weeks time.
Next up is Liverpool in the UEFA Super Cup in Istanbul on Wednesday.