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Thursday 16 August 2018

Blues start with win as focus turns to United

CHELSEA manager Andre Villas-Boas accepts his side will face a "different kind of challenge altogether" when domestic action resumes at Manchester United on Sunday after labouring to a 2-0 Champions League win over Bayer Leverkusen.

With one eye on the trip to Old Trafford, Villas-Boas rested captain John Terry completely and left Frank Lampard on the bench.

Chelsea ambled through much of the match, with England Under-21 forward Daniel Sturridge the main livewire before Brazil defender David Luiz scored on 67 minutes and Juan Mata hit a second in stoppage time.

While Villas-Boas may have been happy enough with the final result, he knows things are about to go to a whole new level this weekend.

"We face United perhaps in their most tremendous moment of motivation and flair and style," said Villas-Boas, who feels Didier Drogba may need more time to recover from a head injury with the striker only set to resume training with the squad at the end of the week.

"A team that has made its impact at the beginning of the Premier League is different from last year, but I think it provokes in us a good challenge.

"Motivation will be the key factor in the game, and the capacity of people to transcend themselves.

"We will go there to try to win it. Let's see how it happens. It's going to be a very, very good early-season game for the Premier League."



deserved

As for what was hardly a convincing display against an organised, but not dominating Bundesliga side, Villas-Boas felt it was a case of job done.

He said: "We had numerous chances and deserved to win.

"An international week has gone by, then we had Sunderland and then, after another two days, a Champions League win against a tough team. But I am pleased, particularly with good passing and fluency in the game."

Villas-Boas also felt there should be no issue with his team selection, adding: "It is just fairness compared to the amount of talent that we have at our disposal."

In the build-up to last night's game, Villas-Boas revealed he would warn Fernando Torres not to speak so candidly about the club in future after the striker branded Chelsea's "older" players as "very slow".

"We had a chat and the situation is solved," Villas-Boas said. "You saw the player involved and he put in a good collective performance."

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