Chelsea’s preparations for the resumption of the Premier League season continued in fine fashion on Sunday June 14, as the Blues defeated QPR 7-1 in a behind-closed-doors friendly at Stamford Bridge.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Billy Gilmour both grabbed a brace in the big victory, which comes just a few days after the Blues defeated Reading 1-0 at Cobham in a similar fixture.
Frank Lampard’s side shredded the Championship side in the west London sunshine, with goals from Mason Mount, Willian, Loftus-Cheek and Olivier Giroud putting them in a commanding 4-1 half-time lead.
It was much of the same after the break, with another strike from Loftus-Cheek adding to the scoreline before Gilmour grabbed two for himself to put the shine on a fantastic Chelsea display.
There was plenty of match action for the whole squad, with N’Golo Kante starting for the Blues after he returned to full contact training recently.
Chelsea return to Premier League action a week today (June 21), when the Blues travel to the Midlands to take on Aston Villa at Villa Park.
Meanwhile Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer used his entire first-team squad in two separate training games against the Championship side at Old Trafford on Friday June 12, losing 2-1 and then winning 3-1.
Marcus Rashford returned, while Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes played in midfield together for the first time.
Pogba and Fernandes played in midfield together during the opening defeat, with Fernandes scoring a penalty and missing one, and United fans will have been encouraged to hear Rashford made his comeback from a back injury suffered in January, on the day Euro 2020 would have started.
Rashford looked in the mood and could have scored two, but was brilliantly denied twice by Albion goalkeeper Jonathan Bond.
In the second game, Andreas Pereira scored twice, along with a goal from Tahith Chong. Pereira’s first was a left-footed curling beauty into the top corner, before slotting a second through the goalkeeper’s legs as he was played through one-on-one by Fred. Chong capitalised on a goalkeeping error for his goal.
United were due to play Stoke in a behind-closed-doors friendly on Tuesday, but the match at Carrington was cancelled as Potters manager Michael O’Neill tested positive for coronavirus.
Solskjaer’s side restart the Premier League campaign at Tottenham on Friday June 19, who lost to bottom club Norwich 2-1 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Friday June 12.
Harry Kane was among four players who returned to the Tottenham side for the friendly against Norwich alongside Moussa Sissoko, Heung-Min Son and Steven Bergwijn. Kane was injured when the season was suspended due to coronavirus.
He has been out since New Year’s Day and was sorely missed as Spurs’ form nosedived before the pandemic, dropping seven points below fourth-placed Chelsea and four behind Manchester United.
The Canaries are six points adrift of 17th-placed Watford and begin their quest for survival with a clash against fellow strugglers Southampton at Carrow Road on Friday June 19.