Chelsea vs. Arsenal: What To Expect After Their UCL Performance
Today, Saturday 19 September 2015, EPL champion, Chelsea take on their north London rival, Arsenal at Stamford Bridge. Nigerian fans of EPL regardless the clubs they support are looking forward to this matchup which is very important to the two England giants who are still both struggling to get their footing this season.
This match for Chelsea fans is one they would be hoping their team wins giving the need to restore their team’s pride following the defeat to Arsenal in the Community shield; Arsenal’s first win over Chelsea manager, Mourinho in 14 matches. As much as Mourinho would want to win the match for the sake of his good record against Arsene Wenger, he would also want a win to boost the mor*le of his team that is currently lounging in the relegation zone.
Arsenal on the other hand is high up there on the EPL standing. Wenger’s team is in a position Mourinho would give anything to be in at this point. Though the Gunners are high up there; their performances leaves a lot of questions to be asked. Arsenal has so far this season not been convincing. Their most a$$ured performance is their win at home to Stoke City last weekend. This good performance at the weekend was however followed by a shabby display during the weekend in the Champions league against Dinamo Zagreb in Croatia.
Arsenal was defeated 2-1 in a match all expected them to use to set the pace for their weekend tie with Chelsea. A good performance would have also sent shivers down the spine of stuttering Chelsea ahead of the crunch tie. Instead of sending shivers down Chelsea’s spine, Arsenal did the exact opposite as they put up a performance that tells Chelsea to come get them. Arsenal showed perfectly well more than anything else that they are vulnerable on the counter attack and they can as well lose chances.
Chelsea on the other hand who everyone thought would struggle against the visiting Israeli giants, Macabi Tel Aviv pulled off out of nowhere their best performance of the season yet. Though still a shadow of the team from last season, their performance was enough to get Arsenal worried. Chelsea for the first time this season did not concede a goal and they also converted chances. The ratio might be low, but its a good start for a team that has for most part of the season struggled in front of goal.
Chelsea was not troubled defensively by their Israeli opponents who opted to pack the box despite the fact that smaller teams in the EPL have shown beyond that Chelsea can be very vulnerable in defense. So taking into account the attacking talent Arsenal posses, Chelsea might need to step up their a$$ured performance at the midweek if they are going to keep out Arsenal’s attack.
Arsenal would equally need to find a way to break the burgeoning synergy that was evident between Fabregas and Diego Costa at the midweek. The last time Fabregas was seen playing the way he did at the midweek was almost a year ago. So Wenger needs to tell his anchorman to stay close to him and close him down as soon as possible anytime he gets on the ball. Costa still looks a shadow of himself, but a player who could pull off the kind of volley he struck the back of the net with on Wednesday needs to be worried about. Even if he looks like he’s having a bad day in front of goal, a player with his quality and confidence can pull off the seemingly impossible and make it look its easiest.