FA Community Shield: Manchester United VS Leicester City Preview

By Timothy Dehinbo

After what seemed like ages, the kick-off of the new Premier ‎League season is only days away. But before the kick-off takes centre stage, we are always treated to an appetiser which is the curtain raiser: The FA Community Shield. 

Its the match contested by winners of the FA Cup and EPL in the previous season. If you had looked into your crystal ball last year, you could have expected United to come into this game as the league champions with Leicester, as FA Cup champions.

However, reverse is this case here, as Leicester come into this game
as deserved champions following their Premier League title triumph, billed as the greatest underdog story in the history of football, and to a larger extent, the sporting fraternity. Their title triumph has seen star midfielder N’Golo Kante who was very key to their title‎ success, leave the club to join de-throned champions, Chelsea. 
Star striker, Jamie Vardy after being linked with Arsenal signed a new deal while PFA player of the year, Riyad Mahrez is on the verge of signing a new deal as well despite rumors linking him with Arsenal and European giants, FC Barcelona. Nampalys Mendy has come in to replace N’Golo Kante while Nigeria international Ahmed Musa, arrived in a club record fee from Russian champions, CSKA Moscow for £16m. 
The Nigerian has made an impact already, scoring twice in their 4-2 defeat to Barcelona in the International Champions Cup on Wednesday having trailed 3-0 at the break prior to his introduction. The Foxes have also drawn 1-1 with Celtic and lost 4-0 to French champions PSG in the International Champions Cup. The Foxes only previous appearance in this competition, was in 1971, where they saw off Liverpool 1-0.‎

Manchester United, on the other hand have a rich history in this competition as they have won 2 of the current 93 Community Shields. Their last appearance in this competition dates back to 2013 when Robin Van Persie’s brace helped then manager, David Moyes, see off the threat of Wigan Athletic.

United have played three pre-season games this summer, losing 1-4 to Borussia Dortmund, while a 5-2 win over Galatasaray in Stockholm, was followed by a 0-0 draw at home to Everton in Wayne Rooney’s testimonial game on Wednesday night at Old Trafford. Jose Mourinho named a strong starting eleven in the game with the likes of Ibrahimovic, Martial, Rooney and co all starting. ‎

Jose lost 1-0 to Arsenal in last season’s Community Shield which followed his ill-fated spell at Chelsea before given the boot in December and will be eager to make amends by kicking off his United coaching career on a high.

Both sides met twice last season with both ties ending 1-1. Bastian
Schweinsteiger cancelled out Jamie Vardy’s record-breaking goal which saw him set a record as the only player to have scored in eleven consecutive games in the Premier League while the tie in May saw Foxes captain Wes Morgan cancel out Anthony Martial’s opener for Manchester United. 
A repeat of last season’s scoreline looks likely, and with no extra-time in Shields, the game is likely to move to penalties.


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