Last updated & checked: 10/08/2021
Arsenal manager Unai Emery has been handed another tough test for his second Premier League game. After his Gunners were beaten 2-0 at home by Manchester City on the opening day of the top flight campaign, his players now face a trip across London to take on the mighty Chelsea. The Blues, of course, have a new manager of their own who is bedding in, in the form of Maurizio Sarri.
Sarri’s first Premier League match, though, was a trip to the relatively less challenging surroundings of Huddersfield Town, where his team won 3-0 on the opening day of the Premier League season. Sarri has reportedly instituted a much more relaxed regime than his predecessor, Antonio Conte, when it comes to matters such as diet. The players also do not have to stay in a hotel together the night before home games, something which was apparently unpopular with the squad.
Arsenal are also battling against history when it comes to this fixture. Chelsea have won five out of the last six matches at Stamford Bridge against the Gunners, with the exception in that run of games being last season’s goalless draw. The Gunners have also not opened a league season with two successive defeats since the 1992/93 season.
Overall in Premier League history, the teams are pretty evenly matched overall. They have met 52 times in total in the competition’s history, with the Blues winning 17 of those games, Arsenal 19 and there having been 16 draws. Of course, for much of that time, Arsene Wenger was in charge of Arsenal. His long reign came to an end at the close of last season.
Chelsea vs Arsenal Prediction: Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal
Our prediction for this game is that Chelsea will win the game 2-1. Home advantage is with Chelsea, which could be vital, especially as they are facing an Arsenal side which is still struggling to find its identity under new manager Unai Emery.
Chelsea showed that they possess quality firepower in their 3-0 away win at Huddersfield last week. Scoring three goals away from home in the Premier League is never easy, whoever the opposition. The Blues clearly carry plenty of attacking threat, and that is bad news for the Gunners, who found it hard to launch attacks from deep against Manchester City last weekend.
The Gunners may well score their first Premier League goal of the season, but they do not possess enough strength overall to beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. The Blues will be tested by a Gunners side who are keen to get their first league win of the season on the board, but they will not fail the test.
Our recommended tip: Chelsea win 2-1
Our recommended betting tip for this game comes from BetVictor, who are offering a price of 23/10 on Chelsea to win and both teams to score. This looks a good bet for this game because Arsenal are well capable of piercing the Blues’ defence at least once. They do not look to have the overall quality and resolve to beat a team of Chelsea’s quality yet, though. They may well score first, but that will only serve to stiffen the Blues’ resolve.
Chelsea’s attacking threats are myriad, which is why it is hard to look beyond them winning this game. The likes of Eden Hazard, Willian, Olivier Giroud and the rest could get past some of the world’s finest defenders, and it is certainly questionable as to whether Arsenal have any of those in their team at the moment. The Blues should score at least twice, even if they do concede early on.
These two sides have met 52 times in Premier League history, with Chelsea winning 17 of those games, Arsenal winning 19 and there having been 16 draws. At Stamford Bridge, Chelsea have beaten Arsenal 12 times, with the Gunners winning seven times at the home of the Blues.
The teams played each other twice in the Premier League last season, with both matches being drawn. The first clash was at Stamford Bridge in September, 2017. The match ended goalless, which brought an end to Arsenal’s run of five consecutive defeats. Chelsea midfielder David Luiz received a straight red card for a high tackle on Sead Kolasinac in the 87th minute of the game.
The second game was at the Emirates Stadium, in January, 2018. This time there were plenty of goals, with the final score being 2-2. All the goals came in the second half. Jack Wilshere scored in the 63rd minute to open the scoring for Arsenal, only for an Eden Hazard penalty to level things up just four minutes later.
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Players to watch: Olivier Giroud & Petr Cech
If you want to keep an eye on one Chelsea player, Olivier Giroud might be that player. The former Arsenal man will be keen to impress against his former club. He scored in this fixture in February 2017, which means if he manages to score at the weekend, he will become only the second player, after Cesc Fabregas, to score for both teams in this fixture. The striker will pose problems for the Gunners defence with his height and ability to hold up play. He also, crucially, has an eye for goal and was part of France’s World Cup winning team this summer.
In terms of an Arsenal player worth watching, then goalkeeper Petr Cech is a man to keep an eye on. The 36-year-old veteran, never one of the most mobile or skilful of goalkeepers, was placed under constant pressure last week by his team’s insistence in trying to play out from the back, whatever the circumstance. Manchester City’s pressing game kept his defenders under pressure, and he was forced to touch the ball far more often than was comfortable for him. Watching how often Cech touches the ball will be a good indication of how Arsenal are faring in the game.