CHELSEA v Arsenal: Preview

Date: Sunday 17th September, 2017
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Kick-off: 13:30 BST

Today’s game sees us play host to an out of sorts Arsenal. They’ve had a couple of poor results in the league, most notably the thumping from Liverpool. It’s also six years since they’ve avoided defeat at Stamford Bridge, so predictably they’re being written off for this game.
The pessimists among us though, will remember they did beat Bournemouth last time out in the league and followed that up with a Europa win midweek. They’ve also beaten us in both the FA Cup and Charity Shield this calendar year, so this is by no means a foregone conclusion.

MANAGER’S VIEWS
Going into today’s game, Chelsea boss Antonio Conte says “I think that Arsenal is one of the six top teams in England and I think that they have a really good squad and want to fight for something important. For this reason, I think it is a massive game for us. When you play against Arsenal it is the same as when you play against [Manchester] City, Liverpool, [Manchester] United or Tottenham. Arsenal are a big rival. I don’t understand why they can’t fight for the title.”
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger meanwhile, says “I’m confident that away from home we will get the points we want, but certainly mentally for our team it is important to play well and get a positive result. Chelsea had a surprising early defeat but after that they have responded very well, to beat Tottenham and Leicester away from home. Overall since their first home defeat, they have played three difficult teams and won their games, so it looks again like they will fight for the Premier League.”

SQUAD NEWS
For Chelsea, Danny Drinkwater (calf) is injured although Eden Hazard could start and Gary Cahill could return.
For Arsenal, Francis Coquelin is out with a hamstring strain, Santi Cazorla is still sidelined and Theo Walcott (calf) is doubtful.

TEAMS
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Courtois, Azpilcueta, Luiz, Rudiger, Moses, Kante, Fabregas, Alonso, Willian, Pedro, Morata
ARSENAL: (Possible line-up): Cech; Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal; Bellerin, Ramsey, Xhaka, Kolasinac; Ozil, Lacazette, Sanchez

LAST SEASON
Chelsea 3-1 Arsenal (4 February 2017)

RECENT FORM (PL)
CHELSEA: LWWW
ARSENAL: WLLW

OTHER STUFF
~ Chelsea have won eight of the last 11 Premier League meetings
~ Chelsea have earned five successive top-flight home wins against Arsenal
~ Arsenal have kept only one Premier League clean sheet in their last 18 games at Stamford Bridge.
~ Chelsea have scored in their last 23 Premier League games at Stamford Bridge.
~ Chelsea are unbeaten in 26 top-flight home matches played on a Sunday
~ Arsenal could lose their first three away games of a league season for the first time since 1954.
~ Arsenal could go three top-flight away matches without a goal for the first time since 1994-95.

PREDICTION
BBC Sport: Chelsea 2-0 Arsenal
Sky Sports: Chelsea 3-0 Arsenal
Sportsmole: Chelsea 2-0 Arsenal

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