Singha All-Stars 0 Chelsea 1 match report: Romelu Lukaku ensures winning return for Jose Mourinho
Belgian striker scores from the penalty spot
He has won the first game of his second era at Chelsea, although tying up a deal for Wayne Rooney to join him in time for the start of the Premier League season will be more of a challenge for Jose Mourinho.
Against the same opposition, the Singha All-Stars, a guest XI of Thai and overseas players, that beat Manchester United on Saturday, so Mourinho's second spell at the club began with a victory with a first half penalty from Romelu Lukaku. The game itself proved little more than a sideshow to the extraordinary stand-off between Chelsea and United that now exists over the future of Rooney.
Chelsea declared their hand an hour before kick-off and confirmed that they have bid for the player but denied that offer included either Juan Mata or David Luiz - as they believe United had told reporters in Sydney. In the absence of Rooney, it was down to Lukaku to lead the line for Chelsea in the first half and then Demba Ba in the second, and the plan is that either Ba or Fernando Torres - who is not yet part of pre-season - will be sold if Rooney arrives.
The results of these games mean nothing, although the manner in which Mourinho spent the whole evening in a very humid Rajamangala stadium prowling the technical area, you would not have known it. David Moyes lost his first game as United coach here on Saturday and one suspected that Mourinho did not want it to go the same way.
There were some clues to what Chelsea will look like this coming season, even in the absence of Torres, Mata, Luiz, Oscar and Cesar Azpilicueta. There were debuts for Andre Schurrle, and the Brazilian right-back Wallace Oliveira Dos Santos in the first half and Marco van Ginkel and Bertrand Traore after the break. Kevin De Bruyne, Tomas Kalas and academy goalkeeper Jamal Blackman all played too, although they also featured in pre-season last year.
Schurrle looked impressive in the first half. He is a powerful and hard-running winger who likes to attack his full-back. On the right side it was Wallace who won Chelsea's penalty in the 32nd minute when he was pulled down on the right side of the area. In the absence of Frank Lampard it was Lukaku who stepped up to drive the ball low past the goalkeeper Kritsana Klanklin.
Lampard was due to start the game but was rested with an ice pack on his ankle. Mourinho made nine of his planned ten changes at half-time with just Ramires and De Bruyne staying on the pitch. The conditions dictated that the game slowed, and the visitors made much fewer changes. Eden Hazard had a free-kick and a volley on the run saved around the hour.
Of the 20 players used by Mourinho only Ramires played the full 90 minutes and they could not add to the goals in the second half. The sponsors did give them a trophy for winning however - the Singha 80th anniversary cup - and Terry got to pick it up himself.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Cech (Blackman ht); Wallace (Ivanovic ht), Kalas (Cahill ht), Terry (Chalobah ht), Cole (Bertrand ht); Essien (Van Ginkel ht), Ramires; Schurrle (Hazard ht), Piazon (Moses ht), De Bruyne (Traore 79); Lukaku (Ba ht).
Referee: C Mahadhab (Thailand)
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
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