UEFA Super Cup
This year’s UEFA Super Cup will throw up a massive battle. The game is pencilled in for Friday, August 30th and it will be played at the Eden Arena in Prague, Czech Republic. Stepping out to duel for the title, which was formerly the European Super Cup, will be UEFA Champions League winners Bayern Munich and UEFA Europa League winners Chelsea. It is a mouth watering clash between two of Europe’s heavyweights and for the first time in the last four year’s there won’t be a Spanish name on the title. Barcelona and Altetico Madrid had spilt the last four editions between them at two each.
It was Altetico Madrid who destroyed Chelsea in last season’s UEFA Super Cup, then with Chelsea as Champions League winners, and the Spaniards holding the UEFA Europa League title. A tremendous performance from Atletico’s Radamel Falcao saw the English Premier League club get shot down 4-1 on the night at the Stade Louis II, where the Super Cup had been held for the previous fifteen years. It is a match which will now go its travels, with the 2014 edition at the Cardiff City Stadium, and the 2015 showing at the Mikheil Meskhi Stadium.
Former Barcelona man Pep Guardiola is now at the helm of the German powerhouse side, and they are trading as favourites to win the 2013 UEFA Super Cup. Interestingly though, history is not particularly on their side here, as they have been to the UEFA Super Cup three times before, in 1975, 1976 and most recently in 2001 and they lost all three of those appearances. That is in contrast to Chelsea who have won one and lost one of their two appearances. But with the power that Bayern Munich displayed last season on all fronts, producing a stunning style of play, an immense defence and immense prowess in front of goal, they are favourites.
Chelsea were in this position last season, as mentioned, when they went up against Atletico Madrid. The Spaniards didn’t give the Blues a chance in the game. But there is of course this time around, the Jose Mourinho factor who is back in charge at Stamford Bridge again. The Blues haven’t been splashing big cash around during the summer, as many had expected them to do. They did draft in a big German name though in the form of Andre Schurrle from Bayer Leverkusen, and were actively trying to lure Wayne Rooney away from Premier League rivals Manchester United.
This match up will bring back memories of the last time the two clubs met, which was in the final of the 2011/12 Champions League. With a 1-1 draw on the night in Munich, Chelsea were totally outplayed by the German side, yet it was the English side who prevailed in a dramatic penalty shoot out after having their backs to the wall. The previous meetings between the two sides before that came in the 2004/05 Champions League, with both sides winning their respective home matches. Over the summer, Bayern Munich were trading at 5/6, favourites, with Chelsea out at 15/4 in 2013 UEFA Super Cup betting odds.