The Premier League kicked off last weekend and in one of the most convincing performances of the week, Chelsea beat Huddersfield Town 3-0 at the John Smith’s Stadium. They face Arsenal on Saturday, who were beaten 2-0 in Unai Emery’s first league game against Manchester City. Ahead of Saturday’s late kick-off, we look at the last three meetings between the sides.
Arsenal 2-2 Chelsea – 03/01/2018
The most recent London derby involving the two English giants followed the same pattern as the ones before it with goals and controversy in equal measure. Following a goalless first-half, the game exploded into life and Jack Wilshere broke the deadlock just after the hour mark, firing past Thibaut Courtois from inside box. It came after the Belgian had made a number of top saves to keep the scores level.
His international team-mate brought the game level less than five minutes later from the penalty spot after being clipped by Hector Bellerin. His spot-kick was exactly what we’ve come to expect of Eden Hazard, calm and composed. The Blues went ahead with minutes left as Marcos Alonso turned home Davide Zappacosta’s low cross but were brought back down to earth as Bellerin sent an unstoppable half-volley past the current Real Madrid keeper deep into injury time
Chelsea 0-0 Arsenal – 17/09/2017
The scoreline might suggest that the game was boring but it was far from it as the Gunners got their first point at Stamford Bridge in six years. It looked for large parts of the game as though the visitors would take all three points but a mixture of poor finishing and solid defending limited them to just the one. Antonio Conte’s side failed to get going, which would be a good description of last term as a whole.
The main talking point of the game surrounded David Luiz’ late sending off after his rash tackle on Sead Kolasinac. It was the second booking following an overhead kick that caught Laurent Koscielny in the first-half. It sparked a debate that the first infringement should’ve led to the Brazilian receiving his marching orders but Michael Oliver didn’t feel the same, choosing to brandish the first of the two yellows. The hosts held on for a point in the dying minutes despite relentless Arsenal attacks.
Chelsea 3-1 Arsenal – 04/02/17
Arsenal were just one of many sides to crumble against Chelsea in Conte’s title-winning campaign as they were comprehensively beaten at the Bridge in February 2017. Yet again, Marcos Alonso got on the scoresheet against the Gunners, this time with a header from Diego Costa’s whipped cross. Hazard doubled his side’s lead with an incredible solo goal that took him past several opponents before scoring against his former team-mate, Petr Cech.
The Czech stopper then gifted their rivals the third goal as his clearance only reached Cesc Fabregas who slotted home to secure all the points. Olivier Giroud then scored a consolation as Arsene Wenger watched from the stands following a charge from the FA. It concluded one of the strongest performances of the season and Blues fans will be hoping to see more of the same this weekend.