Ahead of the Premier League getting underway in August, this season could be a difficult one to predict for Chelsea. The club are currently in the midst of a one-year transfer ban, meaning there will be no new signings arriving.
Considering Eden Hazard's sale earlier this month, and the appointment of a new manager, this will be especially inconvenient.
It is expected that Frank Lampard will be the man to steady the ship. Chelsea are currently in negotiations with Derby over his release, but is expected that the move will be wrapped up fairly soon.
If all of that goes to plan, Lampard's first matches in charge will take place in Ireland.
Chelsea have announced that they will play a pair of friendlies against League of Ireland opposition next month, with games against Bohemians and St. Pat's. The matches will be held on July 10th and 13th, in Dalymount and Richmond Park respectively.
Tickets will be priced at €30 for adults and €15 for children.
Our final pre-season fixtures have been confirmed, starting with a trip to Ireland next week! 💪🇮🇪
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) June 27, 2019
Chelsea are no strangers to these shores, having played Arsenal in a pre-season friendly at the Aviva Stadium in the summer of 2018. That game finished in a 1-1 draw, with Arsenal winning on penalties.
This pre-season is set to be a huge one for the club, as Frank Lampard integrates a number of young players into the first team squad. The likes of Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Ethan Ampadu are all set to feature this season, meaning the weeks before the season kicks off will provide a vital bedding in period.
The club will also participate in the Champions League, meaning their squad will be stretched thin at times.
Lampard certainly has much to prove in management. He had a decent debut season at Derby County, but would ultimately be unable to lead the club back to the Premier League.
Considering the current restrictions they are operating under, Chelsea may view this appointment as something of a free hit.
How it will work out remains to be seen, but Irish fans are going to get the first glimpse of it in action this July.