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Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!

Ox or Ram?

By David Akosim
April 20 2012

A victory in the last London derby for Arsenal will be an important step towards top four qualification. We are at present  4th  in the Premier league form table, with 2 defeats and 7 wins in the last 9 games. Nonetheless, what should not be ignored are the last three games. We have managed to collect a mighty three points against the relegation fodder in the league.

Now yes, we are all aware of the supernatural powers which these teams possess during the last two months of the season, but there should be no excuse for Arsenal football club losing at home to Wigan Athletic. None whatsoever. Midfield injuries and a worn out RVP suggests we will be, and for some players quite literally, limping across the finishing line.


Ramsey v Ox

The absence of Mikel Arteta, probably the stand out signing of the season, means we are once again short in midfield. Abou Diaby played 45 minutes in a reserve friendly, but after the Liverpool debacle, I will be surprised if he gets a starting place.


That leaves the much vilified Aaron Ramsey vying for a place with the much applauded Oxlade Chamberlain. Many supporters, not just in this forum, have criticised the young Welshman for his recent poor form. To be honest, “recent” is being kind, with the exception of a few standout games, he has underperformed all season.


The best thing for Aaron Ramsey is to put this season behind him, take a break, have a full pre-season and start again in August. Worse players have done this and had a successful following season. With Pearce likely to pick Ramsey for London 2012, I doubt he will have a full pre-season with the squad.


All the talk has been of Ramsey’s poor form and questions of his supposed “Potential”, but has ‘the Ox’ really performed much better? Since his outing against A.C Milan, he has had several substitute appearances, yet has failed to make an impact. Maybe his enthusiasm, youthful and willing determination has won over supporters, but is he ready to start in such a must win game?


Nonetheless, whenever Chamberlain has started the lad has done well. He was our best player against Manchester United. His quick passing and ability to take on a man might give him the edge over Ramsey.


There will be no hiding place (as Theo learnt during the 1st half against Spurs) at the emirates come 12:45, so whoever does start needs to grab this chance.


Can RVP do more?

RVP has been exceptional all season. But during the last 6 weeks his form has declined. Fatigue must be taken into account but he was poor against Wigan To be sure of third place and the Golden boot, Captain Van-tastic must regain some form. It is not his fault he is the only competent striker in our team, but that is, unfortunately, the dire situation we are in.


Chelsea Tactics

Once again this Chelsea team, managed by the three musketeers: Terry, Lampard and Drogba, have somehow found title winning form during the end of the season. It happened after the sacking of Mourinho and Scolari, and is happening again, since the beheading of AVB.


With their champion’s league semi on Tuesday, changes are to be expected. Torres, Sturridge and either Kalou or Malouda will lead the line. There will be a lot of movement and interchanging between the three. Any spaces in our defence will be exploited.

When Mark Hughes was the manager of City, he realised Vermaelen was prone in coming out of defence to support the midfield. This is all well and good helping our attacks when in possession, but under the counter attack, it will be a position Chelsea can exploit.


Most opposition, even Villa, at the Emirates have counter attacked us at ease. It is a problem which needs to be addressed. The midfield needs to work harder to maintain its shape when going forward, same with the defence. This is definitely an area Di Matteo will look to exploit, as he did with West Brom last season.


Chelsea’s midfield trio will be hard to predict. Romeu and Essien are likely to come into the team. Essien is no longer the player he once was. He has looked lethargic and slow in his few outings this season, so energy in our midfield will be essential. Their best player Ramires is likely to be rested along with Lampard. At home the midfield is an area we can dominate, but big performances will be needed.


This Chelsea team is beatable. I believe the table is correct; we are the 3rd best team in the league. There is little reason not to be confident ahead of the game. A win is needed, and I believe an Arsenal win will occur. Midfield will be where the game is decided.


Key Battle: Cole v Walcott

Young Left back Bertrand has been used to give Cashley a rest at times this season. The same might happen again on Saturday. But if the ‘greedy arsehole’ does start, Walcott should relish the battle. In the last two games against Chelsea, Theo has scored twice and given Cole a horrid time. He will be swerving off the side of the road just thinking about Theo running at him.



Chelsea Top Premier League scorers:

Lampard: 11

Sturridge: 10

Mata: 6


Clean sheets

Chelsea: 9             Arsenal: 12

Goals conceded per game

Chelsea: 1.38       Arsenal:  1.26


Goals and Shots taken

Chelsea: 59% shots from outside box on target      Arsenal: 33% shots from outside box on target

(With us often conceding from long range strikes, the midfield will need to close down the midfield and restrict space)               


Time of goals

Chelsea: 34% 50-70 minutes                                       Arsenal: 27% 30-50 Minutes

                20%  80+ Minutes                                                   22% 80+ Minutes


Chelsea Away form: Won 6, Drawn 6, Lost 5

Arsenal Home form: Won 12, Drawn 2, Lost 3


 Possible line ups

Arsenal : Szczesny, Gibbs, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Sagna, Song, Ramsey, Rosicky, Gervinho, Walcott, RVP

Chelsea: Cech, Boswinga, Cahill, Terry, Cole, Romeu, Essien, Meireles, Sturridge, Malouda, Torres


Prediction: Arsenal 3-1 Chelsea

Rvp, Theo, Ramsey        Malouda       


What is your prediction? Go the prediction league and make yours.

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Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Arsenal Times (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 11:27
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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2012:04:21:23:06:04 by Padre Pio.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Indiangooner (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 12:03
all we need is for Song to sit back and help the defence... for one game he shld minimise his attempts for the perfect once in a game pass... and if that means an ugly 1-0 win... i wldnt mind it..... need midfielders to help out the defence and no repeat of situation whr Benayoun makes the last ditch tackle outside our box trying to stop Di Santo from scoring

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
younghansolo (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 12:24
Ox started against Utd didn't he? He was outstanding that day, I'd expect the same against Chelsea, especially with their rubbish right backs who will only be able to stop him by kicking him.

RVP loves scoring against Chelsea doesn't he? I fancy another goal this weekend.

I'm convinced we are a better team than Chelsea, time to show it

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Gunners R Us (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 12:31
Ox started against Utd didn't he? He was outstanding that day, I'd expect the same against Chelsea, especially with their rubbish right backs who will only be able to stop him by kicking him.
RVP loves scoring against Chelsea doesn't he? I fancy another goal this weekend.

Yeah I mentioned the ox , when he has started, as played well.

Song is not going to simple sit back. It is up to the whole team to maintain its shape whilst attacking.

What I did realise when writing about chelsea was that they do have good strength in depth. I completely forgot about sturridge and malouda prior to today.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Philly the kid (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 12:46
You forgot to add Mike Dean to the Chelsea line up David.
I can't see us winning this without Mikky Artetatetatet (Scorchio).
Wonder if Dean will repeat his celebratory dance if the chavs score?
Corrupt fu(king FA. They actually want us to lose, I swear it.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
mapleleafgooner (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 13:44

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Padre Pio (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 17:14
Without Arteta I would take a draw in advance. I hear Drogba wont play, hope thats true

- until Wenger moves on, they'll always be the also-rans in the major competitions. A club in elite purgatory. Always good enough to make it to the big race, never fast or smart enough to push over the finish line in first place. That's all about the manager. Until he changes, Arsenal fans will continue to celebrate glorious failure.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Indiangooner (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 17:40
with sturridge expected to play on right ..... i hope they dont get space to create 3 clear cut chances in the first 12-15 mins like the stamford bridge game earlier in the season.... this time they mite just score with every shot on target

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
gunnersingh (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 18:40
I think the chavs might rest JT; they might play essien at CB.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Gunners R Us (IP Logged)
20/04/2012 18:55
getting 4th will still be in there sights. I expect little to no changes in their defence.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
BFGunner (IP Logged)
21/04/2012 07:25
Di Matteo is gunning for the full time job. I think he will need a CL final AND top four to get that so I don't see him pulling any punches for the rest of the season. I expect their strongest side or very near it.

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Philly the kid (IP Logged)
21/04/2012 10:49
Hope you're right Yankee. That would mean not resting too many players who played on Wednesday.

Cant be ar$ed to check who said it above, but i'd rather see Essien at CB than DM!!

Re: Arsenal v Chelsea Preview : 3 points please!
Gunners R Us (IP Logged)
21/04/2012 19:00
I was wrong about the prediction and some selections, but I was not wrong about where the game was won (or drawn I should say).

Neither midfield took old of the game. Both were too poor, in quality, to do so.

The Ox did not have a good game, again. Neither did Ramsey.

Rvp is the only striker at the club and has got nothing in the tank. The few chances/half chanes he he had today would have been taken a few months ago. Not his fault though.

Injuries will only get worse.

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