Arsenal vs Chelsea today at the Emirates for the Lunchtime kick off, a win today is a must because if The Gunners win it then it will put us a step nearer to securing Automatic Qualification for the Champions League next season.
Arsenal go into today’s game on the back of a defeat against Wigan on Monday night and although we were expected to win the game before kickoff, hats off to Wigan they were magnificent and played with the desire that not only meant they left the Emirates with 3 vital points but has also stood them in a good position to complete the job and stay in the Premier League for next season.
Chelsea come into the game after a 1 – 0 victory against Barcelona at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night and it was a resilient defensive display from the Blues, yes they rode their luck at times and perhaps it would of been different if Barcelona hadn’t left their shooting boots in Spain but the fact is the Blues scored and Barcelona didn’t and they therefore are brimming with confidence.
Arsenal have had a blip, and today is a perfect opportunity to prove that the result on Monday was just that. The game is vital and 3 points is a must, today needs to be treated like a cup final. Arsenals players though come into this fixture knowing that they can beat this Chelsea team, and we go back to when Arsenal won 5 – 3 at Stamford Bridge earlier on in the season where Robin Van Persie got a crucial hat trick. It will also be to Arsenals advantage that Chelsea will perhaps have one eye on the return leg against Barcelona in midweek and means that they could rest key players ahead of that tie. Whatever the team that Chelsea put out on the pitch today though, one fact remains the same, Arsenal need to be at the high levels that they have been at in recent weeks against the likes of Milan and Man City to get another incredibly important 3 points today.
The Chelsea Interim boss Roberto Di Matteo has had incredible records since taking over from André Villas Boas losing just 1 game in that time and getting Chelsea to the semi final of the Champions League, so Chelsea come into today’s game on a really good run of form and will not make it easy for Arsenal today.
Team news for Arsenal sees Mikel Arteta ruled out for the rest of the season due with Ankle Ligament damage, Abou Diaby returns to the squad, Gibbs is fit enough to start and Laurent Koscielny returns from his two game suspension to face Chelsea.
Team news for Chelsea sees Didier Drogba and David Luiz out injured, and Ivanovic misses out due to suspension.
Arsenal will need to be as fluent as they can today, yes Mikel Artetas absence is a huge blow but this Arsenal team are still more than capable of getting the 3 points today. The team need to push forward from the first minute and take the chances, if we do that then we will win.
ARSENAL VS CHELSEA HEAD TO HEAD:
Arsenal Wins: 71
Chelsea Wins: 54
Arsenal Goals: 257
Other Interesting Stats:
- Chelsea are yet to beat another London club this season in the Premier League.
- Arsenal have scored in their past 16 consecutive home fixtures.
- At the game at Stamford Bridge this season, Arsenal became the 1st team to score 5 against Chelsea in the top flight since Liverpool in 1996.
Stadium: Emirates Stadium
Kick Off: Saturday 21st April 2012, 12.45pm (UK Time)
Referee: Mike Dean
Prediction: Arsenal 3 – 1 Chelsea
Arsenal Manager: Arsene Wenger
Chelsea Manager: Roberto Di Matteo
Predicted Arsenal line up: Szczesny, Sagna, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Song, Ramsey, Rosicky, Oxlade Chamberlain, Robin Van Persie, Walcott
Bench: Fabianski, Djourou, Gervinho, Santos, Chamakh, Coquelin, Diaby
Key Man for Arsenal: Robin Van Persie
Key Man for Chelsea: Sturridge