Why Stamford Bridge pitch looks different for Soccer Aid 2024 England vs World XI match

Eden Hazard of World XI is challenged by Tom Grennan and Danny Dyer of England
-Credit: (Image: Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

As the 13th edition of Soccer Aid gets underway at Stamford Bridge tonight, many up and down the country will be sitting down to watch the UK's biggest football charity match between England and the Rest of the World.

This year will see the England XI try to snap the five-game winning streak of the World XI with stars including legendary English cricketer Stuart Broad, British athletics icon Sir Mo Farah, actor Danny Dyer, YouTuber Miniminter and musician Tom Grennan.

Frank Lampard and Harry Redknapp are set out to manage the Three Lions from the touchline alongside David Seaman, Vicky McClure and Robbie Williams.

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Other Chelsea legends will be returning to west London with Eden Hazard, Petr Cech, Michael Essien and John Obi Mikel, with former Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino making a swift return to the Blues home ground just two weeks after he walked away from his role.

The Argentine will manage the World XI for his second consecutive year alongside Jesus Perez and Robbie Keane, he'll overlook a squad that includes captain Usain Bolt, radio host Roman Kemp, comedian Lee Mack, and boxer Tommy Fury.

But with the match underway, many are asking questions on social media about the state of the Stamford Bridge pitch, with large areas seemingly covered in sand rather than it's usual pristine state on usual matchdays.

The reason for the pitch issues tonight is likely down to the warm weather spell that the nation's capital has been experiencing recently. With the pitch out of action for the last few weeks since the end of the 2023/24 Premier League season, there's likely not been too much groundwork happening as there usually would be year-round, with the turf appearing to be dehydrated.