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May 2021

Arsenal v Chelsea. All the media say we’ll lose but don’t worry, it’s not a trophy

By Bulldog Drummond

It is a sign of the times, undoubtedly, that the Guardian’s web site does not have one single mention at all of the Community Shield match today.  No preview, not even the statutory slagging off of Arsenal.  Just total and absolute silence other than an article headed, “Arsène Wenger unsure if Chelsea’s signings make them stronger.”

In the article Mr Wenger comments on Chelsea saying, “Time will decide if they are stronger.  It looks like they have kept the basis of their squad. They’ve added Bakayoko who’s a very strong player, strong ball winner, similar to Matic. They have replaced Costa with Morata. Morata is maybe less a goalscorer than Costa but he can provide and score as well.”

So how are we doing with unavailables for the Charity Shield game?  Arsenal are currently sitting fourth in the injury league table, according to Physioroom, but do remember these numbers are based on injuries reported, and as we began to find upon further investigation last season, some clubs report every knock while others ignore injuries if they are illnesses, or if the player is likely to be available for the next league game.

But they are by and large the only figures we have so this is what it looks like…

# Team Total injuries Latest man down What got him
1 Liverpool 7 J Henderson Illness
2 West Ham 7 A Cresswell Muscle Injury
3 West Bromwich 7 J Livermore Knee Injury
4 Arsenal 6 M Ozil Ankle Injury






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Here’s the list, including whether the player would have played, obviously just in my judgement, but for injury.

Player Injury Expected return Available today Would have played  
Coquelin Ankle Injury August 19 No No  
Ramsey Muscle Injury August 6 Probably Yes  
Ozil Ankle Injury August 6 Probably Yes  
Paulista Knee Ligament September 9 No Bench  
Wilshere Broken Leg August 11 No No  
Cazorla Plantaris No Return Date No Yes  








So two players who should be ok to play, and one who is genuinely missing and whom we would have used if we could have done so.  Thus the catastrophic five injured is probably three, maybe two, one of whom might be on the transfer list anyway.

And what of Chelsea I hear you cry…

They are lying 11th in the table with three injuries expressed thus

Player Condition Expected return Available?
 Pedro Fractured Cheekbone August 6 Slight Doubt
T Bakayoko Knee Injury August 20 Major Doubt
E Hazard Ankle Injury September 16 No





So probably two of their squad out.  Thus the catastrophic

And the recent games between the two?  Actually it isn’t too bad…

Date Game Res Score Competition
26 Apr 2015 Arsenal v Chelsea D 0-0 Premier League
02 Aug 2015 Arsenal v Chelsea W 1-0 FA Community Shield
19 Sep 2015 Chelsea v Arsenal L 2-0 Premier League
24 Jan 2016 Arsenal v Chelsea L 0-1 Premier League
24 Sep 2016 Arsenal v Chelsea W 3-0 Premier League
04 Feb 2017 Chelsea v Arsenal L 3-1 Premier League
27 May 2017 Arsenal v Chelsea W 2-1 FA Cup








Of the last seven between the two we have won three lost three and drawn one.   The last community shield match between the two we won 1-0.

Interestingly the goal total across those games is seven all.

In that last game between the two teams in the Community Shield in 2015, we had this line up

Petr Čech

Héctor Bellerin, Laurent Koscielny, Per Mertesacker, Nacho Monreal

Francis Coquelin, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain Aaron Ramsey

Santi Cazorla, Mesut Ozil,

Theo Walcott


The Ox scored.

Moving on, here’s the history of appearances in what was the Charity Shield, before the government’s Charity Commission found the FA was flagrantly breaking charity law and effectively cooking the books.  Why were none of us surprised?

Why did the media make so little of it?  If this had been any other organisation they would have been shut down.  But no, the government stepped in to ensure that the FA were not prosecuted by the Charity Commission.

Club Wins Last final won Runners-up Last final lost Total appearances
Manchester United 21 2016 9 2009 30
Liverpool 15 2006 6 2002 21
Arsenal 14 2015 7 2005 21
Everton 9 1995 2 1966 11
Tottenham Hots 7 1991 2 1982 9
Chelsea 4 2009 7 2015 11
Manchester City 4 2012 6 2014 10
“English Professionals” 4 1929 2 1926 6
Wolverhampton W 4 1960 1 1958 5

And so what about today.  Well that team could look something like this…


Holding      Koscielny      Monreal

Oxlade Chamberlain                        Kolasinac

Ramsey             Xhaka

Ozil      Welbeck


Beached: Giroud, Ospina, Bellerin, Elneny, Mertesacker, Alexis, Iwobi

I am assuming Mustafi is not yet ready.  If he is he could replace Elneny on the beach but I suspect he will be kept ready for next week against Leicester.

The Alexis situation is harder to judge.  On the one had we hear that he comes straight back to training and is all full of zip and kissing the shirt, on the other he has been on holiday in Chile and has had the flu.  Hard to decide what to make of it all.

One postscript: Mr Wenger said, about transfers, “There are transfers now where you buy players who are just players for £50m. The clubs will not want to pay this amount for normal players and will want to wait until a player is free.”   And it is interesting that with all the talk about Alexis going on a free, not too many people also remember that Arsenal have just brought in a player on a free – and he is most certainly the real deal.


49 comments to Arsenal v Chelsea. All the media say we’ll lose but don’t worry, it’s not a trophy

  • MickHazel

    I am looking forward to the game and will enjoy it whatever the result.
    The result is in the balance despite all the experts telling us Chelsea will win. I seem to recall all and sundry writing us off before the FA cup final though and then finishing up with egg on their faces.
    One thing is absolutely certain and that is the moaners will condemn Wenger and the team if we lose but tell us it’s a meaningless game which you cannot give any importance to should we win. Either way I expect we will get a few on here infecting Untold later on today.

  • Menace

    I’m going to Wembley to see Arsenal win the community shield. Chelsea, PGMOL, the media are there as part of care in the community.

    The amazing inflation of footballer prices has not reduced the cost to the fan and will probably become a burden for the future. I’m just glad that I can afford the prices on a pension.

    Looking forward to Kola bear taking on the chavs. It’ll be like the salmon fest in Alaska.


  • Alexanderhenry

    Why is everything seen as a media conspiracy on this blog?

    I think arsenal have a decent chance of winning today, but Chelsea are favourites because they finished first in the league and arsenal finished fifth.

  • nicky

    @Mick Hazel,
    You’re so right in your forecast.
    And Arsene Wenger will be on a hiding to nothing….as usual. 😉

  • Brickfields Gunners

    This sounds like a very likely scenario .

    Diego Maradona decides to come out of retirement and play for Chelsea, he goes into the changing room to find all his team mates looking a bit glum.
    “What’s up?” He asks.
    “Well, we’re having trouble getting motivated for this game. We know it’s important but it’s only Liverpool. They’re shit and we can’t be bothered”.
    Maradona looks at them and says “Well I know I’m a bit fat and old, but I reckon I can beat them by myself, you lads go down the pub.”
    So Maradona goes out to play Liverpool by himself and the rest of the Chelsea team go off for a few beers. After a few pints they wonder how the game is going, so they get the landlord to put the TV on. A big cheer goes up as the screen shows
    “Chelsea 1 (Maradona 10 minutes) – Liverpool 0
    He is beating Liverpool all by himself! Anyway, a few more beers later and the game is forgotten until someone remembers “It must be full time now, let’s see how he got on” They put the TV on.
    “Result from Stamford Bridge: Chelsea 1 (Maradona 10 minutes) – Liverpool 1 (Sturridge 89 minutes)
    They can’t believe it, he has single handed got a draw against Liverpool! They rush back to the Stadium to congratulate him. They find him in the dressing room, still in his gear, sat with his head in his hands.
    He refuses to look at them. “I’ve let you down I’ve let you down”
    “Don’t be stupid Diego, you got a draw against Liverpool all by yourself. And they only scored at the very very end!”
    Maradonna says “No, No, I have, I’ve let you down!. I got sent off after 12 minutes!”

  • Menace

    I’m not sure what your understanding of media is but ‘a win that will be forgotten about by next weekend’ is not exactly support. Prediction in this case is an excuse for disguised abuse.

  • Menace

    Brickfields Gunners
    06/08/2017 at 11:33 am LOL!! hilarious as usual.

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    Mr Drummond, could I possibly replaced Ramsey with Elneny in your central midfield two pairing, and also replace Welbeck with Sanchez in the front three line? My reasons being since Coquelin is down, a near to him as protector of our back three is Elneny, who can as well play as centreback. And as we all know very well. A half fit Sanchez is better than a fully fit welbeck in terms of goals conversion ratio and even giving assist imo. And I wouldn’t be surprised to see Le Prof starting Ospina in this CS match against Chelsea today because he does this kind of a thing in a game against all expectations.

    Therefore, my own 3-4-3 starts read as follows:
    Holding Koscielny Monreal
    D Ox Elneny Xhaka Kolasinac
    Ozil Lacazette Sanchez.

    My bench:
    Cech Bellerin Bfg Bramal Ramsey Nelson Giroud.
    Sorry! I had wanted to include Niles on my bench, but for my inclusion of Bellerin who is reported to yet recovered full match fitness, I’ve dropped Niles from my 18 man match day squad. Hmmm, am I the Arsenal manager?

  • Andrew Crawshaw


    holding, BFG, Nacho
    Bellerin, Elneny, Xhaka, The Ox
    Danny, Lacazette, Iwobi


    Giroud, Ospina, Theo, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Kolasinac, Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock

  • para

    Well, team is a surprise:
    No Alexis, No Oezil, not even on the bench.

  • Andrew Crawshaw


    Cahill, Luis, Azpilicueta
    Alonso, Kante, Fabregas, Moses
    Pedro, Batshuai, Willian

    Caballero, Rüdiger, Morast, Musonda, Christensen, Kyle Scott, Jeremia Boga

  • para

    “Low” key affair from both managers?

    A game for the youth/new buys to shine for both teams.

  • Gord

    This game is available on for commentary.

    None of the other preseason games were (I didn’t check every time).

  • Gord

    I looked at the Guardian and Daily Mail commentaries. The Guardian has already figured that Santi Cazorla will never play again.



  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    Should the Wembley authorities have the retractable sun shade roofing installed? Being a noon kickoff match, the sun is a bit disturbing my viewing of the match. What was that kick that the Ox shot far away from goal when he should have passed the ball if he doesn’t know what to do with it? Guess what? The Phcn have taken light here in my locality in Anguwan Kaya Zaria Nigeria. Thereby stopping me from continuing watching the match after I’ve just renewed my Dstv subscription to enable me watch this match. Let me see if my son can get my gen started.

  • al_the_gunner

    bbc comments
    “with the bright sun in his eyes, didn’t spot Cahill’s elbow and planted his face into it.”

  • Gord

    It sounds like the ref is screwing up this game.


  • para

    If refs are as sharp as today we are in for a good season, and pigs can fly!

  • Gord

    Numbers (Arsenal:Chelsea)

    Shots on target 2:2
    off target 3:0
    Corners 1:2
    Offsides 0:1
    fouls 2:6
    Yellow 1:3
    goal kicks 2:8
    treatments 2:0

    Possession (%Arsenal)
    _5 34
    10 47
    15 47
    20 51
    25 48
    30 46
    35 44
    40 46
    45 46
    45+4 49


  • para


    it did look as if if he ran into the elbow(even though i’m tempted to say he(cahill) clocked him one).

  • Menace

    Maybe looks shap but I can tell you he’s missed a lot. Still the same old conversation with a professional rather than a card

  • Andrew Crawshaw


  • Gord

    I second that Andrew.


  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Commentators loving it!

    I never like seeing the match officials emerging from the tunnel with either team. Particularly when they have arms around each other.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    We are lacking the bit of necessary luck


  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Giroud and Theo coming on. Lavazatte and Iwobi off


  • para

    Conte’s tactics evolve during the game to thwart Arsenal.
    But Arsenal are not closing down as they did in 1st half.

  • Gord

    Let’s level that scoreline Arsenal!


  • para

    Loooked so delliberate that, well deserved.

  • para


  • Gord

    The ref dismisses a Chelsea player?

    What did he do, try to behead Elneny?


  • GoingGoingGooner

    Yes, Sead

  • Gord

    How to go Kolasinac!


  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Yet another bad foul this time getting the red card it deserved. Commentators saying poor old Pedro.

    Yes Kolasinac from the free kick!


  • Gord

    I wonder how Reiss is at penalties?

    No sense waiting to find out, but scoring from open play would be better. 🙂


  • Chris

    Well, with a referee really doing his job, it changes all….

  • Gord

    > I wonder how Reiss is at penalties?

    Guardian is saying that Welbeck can only sky penalties. Is that true? Or just more mindless babbling by the medja?


  • para

    They just had to try out the new penalty rules. 😀

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Just shown a close up of Per. A long row of stitches

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Pen 1 Cahill scores
    Pen 2 Theo scores
    Pen3 Monreal scores
    pen 4 Courtois misses very high
    Pen 5 Morata misses left
    Pen 6 The Ox scores
    Pen7 Giroud scores

    Arsenal win the Community shield 4-1 on penalties

  • ARSENAL 13



    We win


    We win the not a trophy trophy

  • Edda1971

    First trophy of the season to the poorly run club 🙂

  • Gord

    Numbers (Arsenal:Chelsea)

    Shots on target 6:5
    Off target 6:1
    Corners 5:4
    Offsides 1:4
    Yellow 1:3
    Red 0:1
    goal kicks 3:14
    treatments 2:6

    Possession (%Arsenal)
    50 50
    55 50
    60 51
    65 53
    70 52
    75 54
    80 54
    85 54
    90 55
    90+5 55

    Thank you Walcott, Monreal, the Ox and Giroud!

    The Guardian was confident Arsenal would lose in penalties.

  • WalterBroeckx

    match repot is already on line. Walter the fastest match reporter in the world. Well at least on Untold 😉

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Four excellent penalties from Arsenal

    Two poor ones from Chelsea

  • Good to know that, as poor as Arsenal is, as clueless as Wenger will always be, we can actually beat Chelsea twice in a row.