Bulldog Drummond continues his review of the Arsenal v Chelsea game
The most important thing of course is that we score against Chelsea. Because if we don’t it will six league games without scoring against them – equalling our worst record ever in the PL, which is six games without a goal between 1997 and 2000 against Liverpool!
Last season it was 0-0 at the Ems which more or less gave Chelsea the title. Although of course we did actually score in the Community Shield thanks to the Ox, back in August at Wembley.
And come to think of it, we won that game. But it doesn’t count. Cos it’s not a Trophy. (Well it was for me, but one has to bow to the superior knowledge of the aaa and their friends in blue). [Are you feeling all right Bulldog? – Tony]
Anyway here’s the table and form….
In the form column the latest games are on the right. So although it is indeed true that Chelsea are unbeaten in the last six, it is actually four draws and two wins (10 points) against Arsenal’s three wins and two draws (11 points).
In other words, even during their “Great Improvement” (rather like Mao’s Great Leap Forwards) we’re still edging further ahead.
Chelsea have won two games away from home out of ten. Arsenal have won seven games at home out of ten. Arsenal’s goal difference at home is +10. Chelsea’s away goal difference is -4.
Four of Chelsea’s six league wins this season have come against teams in the bottom eight, with the others against a Crystal Palace side that was losing a spot of momentum and an Arsenal team reduced to nine men, while Chelsea were boosted to 12 by the support of the referee and a sending off so insane that even the ridiculous FA had to give in and rescind it.
As for the teams, Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil should both be fit and Mohamed Elneny will probably be on the bench, maybe making his debut in the next round of the cup. Eden Hazard is back in training and might start or will at least be on the bench.
I can’t do the physioroom injury list at the moment because something very odd has happened to their site as they are showing only Jack as an injury. Until a week ago each time I checked their list accorded with Untold’s records, so I don’t know what they are up to.
There is another site that does injuries – premierinjuries.com but they’ve gone the other way…
|The man||The injury||The gruesome details||Returning…|
|Santi Cazorla||Knee Injury||Lateral Knee Ligament Sprain – LCL Injury||01/03/2016|
|Jack Wilshere||Calf/Shin/Heel Injury||Fibula Fracture||27/02/2016|
|Francis Coquelin||Knee Injury||Medial Knee Ligament Injury – MCL Injury||07/02/2016|
|Danny Welbeck||Knee Injury||Knee Surgery||07/02/2016|
|Mesut Ozil||Ankle/Foot Injury||Foot Injury||24/01/2016|
|Alexis Sanchez||Other||Lacking Match Fitness||24/01/2016|
So they have Ozil and Alexis coming out of injury, but include Coquelin because he’s not match fit – which is a bit different from being injured. I wonder if Santi will be able to force his way into the team when he comes back?
Anyway onto the discipline table and would you know it, we is bottom of the league. Actually I do like this approach because it gives
- Caution 4 pts
- Denial of a goal scoring opportunity or dismissal for 2 cautions 10 pts
- Violent conduct, serious foul play, spitting or offensive and abusive language 12 pts
Surprisingly it is provided by the FA so one point to them for doing it. It does seem to accord with the experience of our referee analysts too which is why I thought the FA might suppress it. But maybe the FA are no longer friends with PGMO? Now that would be something.
But I don’t think Stoke had 12 points added for the offensive language of their crowd when they played Arsenal, but they should have done. That would be fun too.
However look not only at Arsenal’s position at the foot of the table but just how far behind we are. WBA are twice as indisciplined as Arsenal – but have you ever heard that on Sky? Chelsea are 70% more indisciplined than Arsenal. Even Man U just one place above Arsenal are 38% more indisciplined than Arsenal.
|1||West Bromwich Albion||26||53||3||246|
|16||West Ham United||24||31||4||158|
* Plus 10 for offensive chanting at the Stoke Arsenal game.
Mr Wenger said before the weekend, “Even if Chelsea are not in the best position, look at their squad. It’s a big game because of the quality of the players on the pitch. We play at the Emirates and know how important it will be to win this game.”
And by and large the feeling is for another Arsenal home win – 2-1 is the pundits favourite score it seems.
Here’s some of the funny ol’ bits and pieces the papers like to present…
- Arsenal have won 7 of their last 8 home matches in the Premier League.
- Arsenal have kept a clean sheet in their last 3 home matches against Chelsea in all competitions.
- Chelsea have kept a clean sheet in 6 of their last 7 matches against Arsenal in all competitions.
- Chelsea have scored at least 2 goals in 5 of their last 6 matches in the Premier League.
- Chelsea are undefeated in their last 6 matches in the Premier League.
- Chelsea are undefeated in 9 of their last 10 matches against Arsenal in all competitions.
- Mesut Ozil has never scored or set up a goal in seven appearances against Chelsea.
What’s interesting is that a lot of the reviewers have spoken about “Chelsea’s defensive woes” using exactly the same language as they used earlier in the season about “Arsenal’s defensive woes.” How odd!
An anniversary of a different kind
Here’s what the Daily Express was saying just one year ago…
Anyway back to reality we find that
- Petr Cech has kept 10 Premier League clean sheets this season – equal top with Joe Hart after 22 matches.
- Chelsea are 27 points worse off than at the same stage of last season.
Here’s the team (maybe)
Bellerin Mertesacker Koscielny Monreal
Campbell Ozil Sánchez
On the beach… Pick seven from, Ospina, Gibbs, Gabriel, Chambers, Elneny, Rosicky, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Reine-Adelaide, Iwobi, Walcott
I’ve dropped Theo to give him a shake up, and if that happens, I’d bring him on for Sanchez in the second half, which ought to scare the shit out of Chelsea, force them into multiple fouls which the ref will ignore… Oh no, hang on, that won’t work. They do that anyway.