The next time Chelsea head out of the tunnel onto the pitch after this friendly against Inter will be in the English season curtain-raiser at Wembley for the FA Community Shield. As Premier League champions, they will be facing Arsenal, the FA Cup winners who outplayed them back in May at the iconic stadium.This fixture at the National Stadium in Singapore, then, is of extra importance as Antonio Conte looks to begin his second season in charge in the same manner that he finished his first. He will be well aware of how the last title defence went. Jose Mourinho - entering the fabled third season that seems to bring the worst out of him as his squads tire of his intense management style - in the summer of 2015, could not eek the quality out of his lethargic players that had seen them win the Premier League just months before; the result of a lacklustre pre-season’s training. Conte, however, is a different kind of coach – the type that is meticulous in drilling his players so that they are experts in their positions, and he will not accept slacking as he bellows from the sidelines for the full 90 minutes, demanding 100% effort at all times. The coming weeks will be fascinating to observe as they attempt to marry domestic and continental fixtures.
For Inter, a place in Serie A’s top four is the target as they seek a return to European football, but specifically the Champions League. If they can keep hold of Manchester United target Ivan Perisic then they will be in with a major chance. Their pre-season form has, like Chelsea’s, been promising. Despite losing to 2. Bundesliga team Nurnberg early on, they have had more success in the International Champions Cup, beating Lyon and Bayern Munich.
Both sides, therefore, go into Saturday’s friendly eager to sign-off their Far East tours on a positive note. The Blues, who may give Alvaro Morata his first start since joining from Real Madrid, are rated as favourites at Tipbet – they can be backed at 1.75. The Italians are 4.00 to come out on top, while it is 1.55 for them both to score. Full odds coverage is available.