3 things we learned from Chelsea vs Arsenal
Unai Emery’s first away game ended in defeat at Stamford Bridge as Arsenal lost to Chelsea. With two losses out of two, the Arsenal boss is under immense pressure to deliver against West Ham.
Maurizio Sarri meanwhile enjoyed his second win in as many games, and now finds himself at the top of the Premier League table. Despite not having Hazard fully fit, Chelsea have managed to come up with the goods.
The affair at Stamford Bridge lived up to its billing and provided a spectacle for the neutrals. Chelsea opened the scoring and went two up after Morata scored his 2nd goal in 16 appearances.
After squandering a couple of gilt-edged opportunities, The Gunners finally found their shooting boots. Mkhitaryan got one back before Iwobi drew parity from close range. However, The Gunners were to endure heartbreak towards the end as Alonso swept home the winner.
The titanic battle in West London provided a lot of talking points. Through the course of this article, we will look at a few things we learned from the see-saw battle at the Bridge.
#1 Both teams still look defensively vulnerable
While the game was a wonderful watch for neutrals, the managers will be pulling their hairs out due to defensive shortcomings on both sides.
The wide players of Arsenal and Chelsea found too much room for the managers’ comfort. The problem was very evident in the first half when Arsenal carved out opportunity after opportunity courtesy of their full-backs - Bellerin and Monreal.
Arsenal should have put the game to bed before the break, and they were left ruing their chances in the end.
Similarly, Arsenal’s wide players’ non-inclination to track back led to them conceding two goals, including the winner. The first goal was created by Alonso when he found himself in acres of space on Arsenal’s right side.
Bellerin who was drawn towards Willian and Mkhitaryan didn’t track back efficiently enough to stop Alonso from having a free run at goal. The winner was scored by Alonso who popped up in Arsenal’s penalty box unmarked.
Arsenal also faced problems playing the high line. Chelsea exposed this weakness more than once, and if not for poor decision making, could have cashed in.
While Sarri would have liked the way his team cut through Arsenal’s defence, his defence's failure to avoid the same will be a massive cause of concern. On another day, with better finishing, Chelsea could well have found themselves on the losing side.
On the other hand, the problems just keep on piling for Emery, and he has a lot of work to do at London Colney if Arsenal is to challenge for the top four.