Jose Mourinho appears to have got his way in his battle for the early upper hand in the race for the Premier Legaue title.
The Chelsea manager has been lodging to have his side's match against Aston Villa - which had to be rescheduled - brought forward rather than delayed.
The Premier League have now announced that is what will happen.
The original match at Stamford Bridge had been scheduled to take place on Saturday August 31. It will now be played on Wednesday 21 August. The reason for the re-scheduling is due to Chelsea's involvement in the European Super Cup against Bayern Munich in Prague on Friday August 30.
Mourinho was well aware that should the Blues earn victories against Hull on the opening weekend and Villa if the game was brought forward, Chelsea could open up a six-point lead over Manchester United if they beat the Premier League champions at Old Trafford on August 26.
This would give the Blues an early psychological advantage with the new season just over a week old, and it’s something that former United right-back Gary Neville has his concerns about.
“In those Mourinho years, we’d fall too far behind to mount a challenge,” Neville admitted recently. “You don’t want to fall too far behind a Mourinho team. They have the nerve inside the club to withstand the pressure.”
Villa boss Paul Lambert may have preferred to delay the game, with his side already set to meet Arsenal and Liverpool in the opening games of their campaign.Reuse content