Opposites attract in Perth v Chelsea

A clash of styles could be on the cards when Chelsea take on Perth Glory at the new Optus Stadium on Monday night.

Although there'll be no competition points dished out, the result will certainly not be swept under the carpet by either side.

READ: Chelsea in Perth: Who are the Blues' stars?

ULTIMATE GUIDE: How to get around Glory vs Chelsea

The highly anticipated friendly offers Australian football fans a chance to view a club of the quality that the Hyundai A-League would like to aspire.

But it will also show a glimpse of the revolutions taking place at each team.

Both on the opposite sides of the world, and led by managers that occupy differing positions on the ideological spectrum.

In the Perth corner, it is a golden opportunity for Tony Popovic to solidify his ideals on the Glory team.

The Western Australian outfit have been handicapped by their erratic approach in the last few seasons. But the chance to claim a big scalp playing to Popovic's tune will leave the Glory with no shortage of motivation for the fixture.

Popovic is certainly one well-equipped to navigate a contest of this nature. One of the former Wanderers' boss' landmark victories arrived in a high-stakes AFC Champions League clash against Guangzhou Evergrande, who were managed by Marcelo Lippi.

He will face another Italian in the dugout at Optus Stadium in Maurizio Sarri, a figure who has been compared to the Lippi in the past.

Sarri is a latecomer to the top-flight managerial scene but has developed a reputation for proactive and expansive football, crystallised by his recent years at Napoli.

It's a style that has earned plaudits across the world, including from Pep Guardiola, who branded Sarri’s Napoli’s side ‘maybe the best I’ve ever faced’ following an enthralling Champions League tie last year.

The new Stamford Bridge boss has had only a matter of days, however, to introduce his footballing philosophy to Chelsea.

The Londoners have arrived in Perth missing their World Cup stars and the Italian will also have to ease tensions that likely linger following Chelsea's fifth-placed finish last year.

He'll need time to embed his ideals. And while a friendly against Perth might appear like a good start, the inherent will to win of his opposite number could count against the new Blues boss.

In contrast, Popovic's Perth are approaching the match as a team built for the here and now, and will view the game as a potential springboard for great things under the former defender.

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Brendon Santalab could prove to be one of Popovic's key lieutenants in this transition, and the striker knows how important the outcome of the match is in instilling confidence in the Glory side.

He says Perth will be entering the game with all the vigour of a cup final. Ultimately, this is what the Glory boss expects and demands week in, week out.

"There’s no surprises, we’ll go out there with a winning mentality," he said.

"You’re playing Chelsea so you obviously have to pick your defence and make sure your structures’ good to stop all the class and quality they have.

"I’m looking forward to what will be an interesting match and hopefully one that we can spring an upset. The mentality is to go out there and create an upset."

Santalab flourished in Popovic's Wanderers' tenure, and said he's already starting to bring the same mentality 3000 kilometres west of Sydney.

"There’s high expectations. There’s expectations to be at your best every day. And I think it’s really important to have that if you want to succeed and win trophies.

"Without wanting to be the best every day it’s hard to achieve those things."

There's no doubt that Perth will be aiming for their best when they take to the pitch against Chelsea.

Perth Glory