Search

Arsenal 0 Chelsea 1: what we predicted and how it panned out

13:15 25 January 2016

Arsenal

Arsenal's Per Mertesacker is shown the red card by referee Mark Clattenburg during the 1-0 defeat by Chelsea

PA Wire/Press Association Images

What we predicted

We confidently forecast that Arsenal would finally end their barren run against their struggling London rivals with a 2-1 victory.

What happened

Even with a full complement of players, the Gunners looked shaky at the back and presented Oscar and Willian with early opportunities to test their former team-mate Petr Cech.

But the turning point came on 18 minutes when Chelsea counter-attacked and the home midfield crumbled as Willian slid a pass through for Diego Costa, who was chopped down by Per Mertesacker.

Referee Mark Clattenburg showed Mertesacker the red card – and Arsene Wenger’s decision to sacrifice centre-forward Olivier Giroud for Gabriel was met with derision from large sections of the Emirates crowd.

It didn’t help when Costa converted Branislav Ivanovic’s cross to put the visitors ahead soon afterwards and Arsenal, who seemed content to play out the rest of the game with a 4-2-3-0 formation, rarely looked likely to equalise.

Mathieu Flamini volleyed over in first-half injury time, but that was about as close as they came, while Cech denied Costa and ex-Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas at the other end.

Buy him a pint

Not for the first time in recent weeks, Cech kept his side in the contest, while Joel Campbell worked hard for little reward, especially after the Gunners went down to 10 men.

However, the pace and energy of Hector Bellerin on the right flank gave Arsenal their best chance of a recovery – although it might have helped if he’d had anyone to aim his crosses towards.

Get your coat son

Aaron Ramsey had a shocker, giving the ball away repeatedly when his side desperately needed him to seize control of a midfield area that was dominated by Fabregas.

Yet Wenger must shoulder the majority of the blame. Not for taking off Giroud, but for his stubborn refusal to change formation so that Theo Walcott – or Campbell – or Alexis Sanchez – could play as a striker. How exactly did he expect his side to score?

Magic moment

We’re clutching at straws here… but at least we didn’t have to witness Jose Mourinho celebrating Chelsea’s victory.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington Sports News

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Middlesex's Dawid Malan

Skipper Dawid Malan struck an unbeaten half-century to lead Middlesex to a thrilling victory over Somerset in a rain-reduced T20 clash at Lord’s.

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Jordan Nobbs, Arsenal Ladies

Jordan Nobbs says Arsenal Ladies must replicate their performance level from last month’s Wembley success to get their league campaign back on track.

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Middlesex batsman Nick Gubbins

It’s a shame Chris Gayle won’t be coming to Lord’s when we take on Somerset – in a way it would have been fun to play against him.

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Islington BC's gold medal winners at the Haringey Box Cup, left to right: Amy Broadhurst, Lamin Conteh and Amy Andrew. Pic: Dieter Perry

A trio of Islington BC fighters maintained the club’s excellent record in the Haringey Box Cup with three gold medals at Alexandra Palace.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016
George Bailey batting for Australia

Middlesex coach Richard Scott is predicting a “seamless transition” when George Bailey replaces Brendon McCullum as the club’s overseas player next week.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Shotokan Karate London students recorded a 100 per cent pass rate with their gradings

Shotokan Karate London celebrated a 100 per cent pass rate as a total of 23 students successfully navigated their grading examinations.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Access2Sports U16 players Jason Prince (left) and Rio Murray-Webster in action

Rio Murray dominated the closing stages to ensure that Access2Sports defeated Kensington & Chelsea Knights 70-29 and clinched a place in the Community Basketball League Under-16 play-off final.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Islington sprinter Shania Umah with one of her medals at the London Schools Championships

Sprinter Shania Umah was Islington’s star performer as she collected two medals in the London Schools Championships at Battersea Park.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

£15k prize bundle

Imagine having the opportunity to win an incredible £15,000 bundle of some of the most amazing prizes available. Well, for one lucky contest entrant that dream could soon become a reality because we at MyOffers are offering an incredible free prize bundle that will make even the most hardened person wild with excitement.

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe