Arsenal v Chelsea: the team




By Bulldog Drummond

The injury news ahead of the game has no surprises.  William Saliba is unlikely to return and our other long term injuries are of course still out.   Meanwhile at Chelsea Frank Lampard is out to win the worst manager of the year competition with five defeats out of five.

For Arsenal after three draws and a defeat, it is time for the dip in form to be over and for there to be a return to winning ways.  For all clubs that are doing well, and then get a few bad results, there ultimately is an end, and this looks like being it for Arsenal.

We don’t know how much that heavy defeat to Manchester City, in what was billed as a title decider, will hurt them but I guess we are about to find out.

Meanwhile the media is finding excuses for Chelsea: here’s one from the BBC – “Chelsea have been so bad that in some ways the pressure is off.”

And Arteta will take confidence from this dip which he experienced with Arsenal as he was busy turning the club around in 2020.  Two draws and five defeats before Chelsea came along on Boxing Day and were thumped 3-1.

Date Match Res Score
8 Nov 2020 Arsenal v Aston Villa L 0-3
22 Nov 2020 Leeds United v Arsenal D 0-0
29 Nov 2020 Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers L 1-2
6 Dec 2020 Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal L 2-0
13 Dec 2020 Arsenal v Burnley L 0-1
16 Dec 2020 Arsenal v Southampton D 1-1
19 Dec 2020 Everton v Arsenal L 2-1
26 Dec 2020 Arsenal v Chelsea W 3-1


Now what was particularly interesting on that day was the comparative league position of each team before the game…  Here’s the extract from the table for Christmas Day 2020.


Team P W D L F A GD Pts
5 Chelsea 14 7 4 3 29 14 15 25
15 Arsenal 14 4 2 8 12 18 -6 14


The seven defeats leading up to that game puts the current difficulty of three draws and one defeat in the shade.  But Arsenal have won nine of the 11 London derbies they have played this season and drawn the other two, so a defeat seems very unlikely.

And here’s a thought.  If Gabriel Martinelli scores one more goal tonight, that will give him 16 Premier League goals in 2022-23, the most ever for a Brazilian player in the Premier League.  Not bad for a 21-year-old rejected repeatedly by Manchester United.

We need also to look for any sign of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hasn’t been seen at Chelsea since 6 November.

As for the team, 90 min give us


White, Holding, Gabriel, Zinchenko;

Xhaka, Partey, Odegaard;

Saka, Jesus, Martinelli

The Standard don’t deign to give us a team but do say “Leandro Trossard could come back into the team.”

And indeed SportsMole agree with this line up 


White, Holding, Gabriel, Zinchenko;

Xhaka, Partey;

Saka, Odegaard, Trossard;


And here’s something rather freaky – possibly put up just to see if we are paying attention

Arsenal vs. Chelsea: Team News, Predicted Line-Ups, Live …

Bleacher Report › World Football › Chelsea

5 hours ago — The German has been struggling with an ankle injury, so if he doesn’t make it to face Chelsea we can expect either Calum Chambers or Gabriel Paulista to …

Yes it is all a tale from five years ago.  How very odd.

Football London however offer


White, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney;

Jorginho, Trossard, Odegaard;

Saka, Jesus, Martinelli.

And that is about all the variations we can get before it all kicks off.

One Reply to “Arsenal v Chelsea: the team”

  1. I can confidently predict that Chelsea will avoid relegation this season by at least 4 points.

    Kavanagh/Madley will be the referee/VAR pairing for the Newcastle match at the weekend

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