Sitting six points off their fourth-placed visitors after last weekend’s 1-0 loss at West Ham, Arsenal (W12, D5, L5) realistically cannot afford to lose if they want a Champions League return. Yet with just one Premier League (PL) victory over Chelsea in 14 games (W1, D5, L8) since 2011, the ‘Gunners’ will be underdogs here.
Last weekend’s loss marked the first time this league season that Arsenal have failed to score since opening day. That forms part of a relatively poor run since mid-December (W2, D1, L3), especially considering their previous 22-game unbeaten run (in all competitions). Still, home form remains good with just one PL defeat all season (W8, D2, L1) and seven victories coming with a -1 handicap.
Chelsea (W14, D5, L3) are unbeaten in their last four league games (W3, L1) and arrive at the Emirates on a run of three straight one-goal margin PL away wins. With just eight goals conceded on their travels (W7, D1, L2), only two sides have conceded less.
Last week’s win over Newcastle means the ‘Blues’ have now opened the scoring in 73% (16/22) of their league games, that rises to 80% (8/10) in away matches.
Players to watch: Both of Aaron Ramsey’s (Arsenal) goals and four of his six assists this PL season, have been as a substitute.
Eden Hazard (Chelsea) has ten goals and ten assists this PL campaign – three of his four historical PL goals vs Arsenal are penalties.
Stat attack: Arsenal’s PL games average a league-high 3.55 goals.
October 2016 was the last time Arsenal drew 0-0 at home in the PL, a run of 44 games.
Arsenal have scored ten PL goals at home from the 76th minute onwards without reply.
Chelsea average 1.90 goals per away PL match as opposed to 1.75 at home.
Chelsea have been behind at half-time just once this PL season.
Will not play
(Lower Back Injury)
van Ginkel M.
Referee: Taylor A. (Eng),
Venue: Emirates Stadium (London)