With less than few weeks to the commencement of the European season, pre-season is beginning to heat up, with games becoming less about gaining fitness and more about tactical preparation for the season ahead.
Soccernet reviews some of the key preseason matches played by top clubs in Europe.
Positive Start For Chelsea, Lampard
After losing 1-0 to Kawasaki in his preseason game, Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard now has a reason to smile after recording two straight wins.
The biggest win was the 2-1 victory over Barcelona in the Reuter Cup thanks to goals from Tammy Abraham and Ross Barkley before defeating Reading 4-3 in another preseason game ahead of their Premier League clash against Manchester United.
Liverpool struggling to gain form
In terms of results on the field, it hasn’t been a very successful preseason so far for Liverpool. The Reds continued their travelling preseason tour with a match in Edinburgh, Scotland against Napoli, and the Italian side came away with a 3-0 victory.
The team had initially lost 3-0 to Borussia Dortmund before falling to another defeat against Sevilla.
Arsenal in cruise control
The Gunners followed up their 2-1 win over Bayern Munich with a dominant 3-0 victory over Fiorentina, with the club’s youngsters making the difference. Eddie Nketiah netted twice before Joe Willock fired home a third to leave Arsenal fans feeling thoroughly excited for the upcoming season. However, the team lost 4-2 on penalties against Real Madrid after the game had ended 2-2 on regulation time.
The Gunners also failed to beat Lyon at the Emirates Cup with the Frech side winning 2-1 to clinch the trophy.
Early Perfect Results For Manchester United In Preseasons
Manchester United’s 1-0 victory over Inter in the International Championship Cup (ICC) gave team manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer a feel that they could begin their Premier League campaign on a bright note. The Red Devils also follow the victory against the Nerrazuri with a sweet 2-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur a few days later to maintain that winning mentality.
Real Madrid out of form
Still struggling to find form, the team lost 3-1 to Bayern Munich in their opening fixture of the International Championship Cup (ICC) before defeating Arsenal 3-2 on penalties after the game had ended 2-2 on regulation time.
However, Real Madrid’s rounded off with a humiliating, 7-3 thrashing by city rivals Atlético Madrid, has left Zinedine Zidane’s men with many more questions than answers as they return to Spain. Passive displays; new signings that have underwhelmed; injury after injury; the same old problems with Marcelo and Toni Kroos; the frankly surreal Gareth Bale saga… It has not been a successful summer so far, it is fair to say.
Manchester City Contrasting results
Starting with the Premier League champions who continued their tour of Asia with a visit to Yokohama, the J-League side more than held their own but were ultimately undone by the superior quality possessed by Pep Guardiola’s men.
Manchester City might have won the Premier League title last summer, but does it really mean anything if they can’t win the Asia Trophy?
As you would expect, City dominated possession against Wolverhampton Wanderers, but could not find a way through. Raheem Sterling missed a first-half penalty, which was a sign of things to come.
The game went to penalties, where it looked like nobody wanted to score. Four of the first five efforts were either missed or saved, and goalkeeper Rui Patricio was the hero of the day after he saved Lukas Nmecha’s effort to seal a 3-2 shootout win.
Bright Start For Griezmann, Barcelona
After losing 2-1 against Chelsea in the Reuter Cup without Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and a few to mention, Barcelona bounced back to winning ways as the team defeated Vissel Kobe 2-0 to finish their 2019 summer tour in Japan on a high note.