One of the many uncertain things surrounding Chelsea Football Club this summer has been made a bit more certain as the club unveiled a completely revamped pre-season schedule today.
Previous plans had Chelsea traveling to Australia, then to Sweden, and then back home for the Community Shield against the champions Manchester City. While most of the teams on the schedule remain the same, the venues have changed drastically. Hope you can get refunds for those Sweden tickets! (Chelsea are offering refunds if you meet specific criteria, and have not been successful in canceling otherwise.)
Chelsea will still begin preseason Down Under with the friendly against Perth Glory in their new stadium on July 23 — this had been set for a long time and not part of the International Champions Cup, so this was not affected by the ICC’s scheduling issues. A week later, we’ll be on the Riviera in Southern France to play Internazionale in Nice. Then we travel to Dublin to take on Arsenal on August 1st before taking on City in the Community Shield. There’s even time to squeeze in one more friendly, at the Bridge against Lyon just a couple days later (slightly reminiscent of the Fiorentina friendly in 2015 that was also played midweek between the Community Shield and opening weekend of the Premier League).
The final (?) pre-season schedule is as follows:
July 23: vs. Perth Glory (Perth, Australia)
July 28: vs. Internazionale (Nice, France)
August 1: vs. Arsenal (Dublin, Republic of Ireland)
August 5: vs. Manchester City (Wembley)
August 7: vs. Lyon (Stamford Bridge)
The Inter, Arsenal, and Lyon (who replace Sevilla) matches still count towards the International Champions Cup, which has really been an extra burden this summer already. At least we get to remain in Europe for it.
Chelsea will begin the new season the weekend after the City match, though we won’t know the exact date until tomorrow, which is when the Premier League fixtures are released.