Mour­inho s warn­ing shot

Sunday World - - Diski fo sho - AB­DUL MILAZI

IF the first games of the Bar­clays Pre­mier League were a sign of things to come, then the foot­ball gods must be smil­ing.

Chelsea man­ager Jose Mour­inho made his in­ten­tions known with a 3-1 win over Burn­ley.

It was not the win as such that gave the game away, but the per­for­mance of his two new sign­ings, mid­fielder Cesc Fabre­gas and striker Diego Costa.

Fabre­gas marked his re­turn to English foot­ball by show­ing what a classy player he is. Costa scored four goals in two matches against Le­ices­ter City and Burn­ley.

More in­ter­est­ing is how Mour­inho has been try­ing out Fabre­gas in var­i­ous roles dur­ing pre­sea­son friendlies. He played him in the hole” in a 4-2-3-1 for­ma­tion and as an at­tack­ing mid­fielder in a 4-3-3 sys­tem. The mid­fielder ex­celled in both roles, giv­ing the Spe­cial One” plenty of op­tions.

At Manch­ester United, new boss Louis van Gaal in­tro­duced a new 3-4-1-2, and slot­ted Juan Mata in his pre­ferred cen­tral role be­hind two strik­ers. Wayne Rooney, who has re­gained form un­der the new man­ager, seems to be lov­ing the new for­ma­tion. He scored his side’s only goal against Swansea. Whether the 3-4-1-2 for­ma­tion will work in a coun­try where the tra­di­tional style is to at­tack through wingers re­mains to be seen. A three-men de­fence might just be ex­posed. Swansea s mid­fielder Gylfi Sig­urds­son was on fire against Van Gaal’s boys, as­sist­ing with the open­ing goal and net­ting the win­ner. He is one to watch. Liver­pool mid­fielder Ra­heem Ster­ling scored the open­ing goal against Southamp­ton and pro­duced an as­sist on their way to a 2-1 vic­tory. There are many play­ers who stood up to be counted. We are im­pressed. Mour­inho has fired a se­ri­ous warn­ing shot and de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Manch­ester City should be wor

ried.

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