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Arsenal 1-2 Chelsea: 5 Hits and Flops | Premier League 2019-20

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
Modified 30 Dec 2019, 08:54 IST

Chelsea
Chelsea's top goalscorer Tammy Abraham celebrates completing the comeback late on against Arsenal

Jorginho and Tammy Abraham's strikes ensured Chelsea recovered from a one-goal deficit to snatch all three points and win late on against London rivals Arsenal - thus finishing the decade with a four-point cushion in fourth place. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's diving header saw the deadlock broken after 13 minutes for his 13th league goal, as the Gunners started brightly and looked to expose Frank Lampard's three-man backline at will.

Both sides made early changes, although Arsenal were forced into one. Calum Chambers (knee) limped off and was replaced by Skhodran Mustafi, while Lampard reverted to a four-man formation with full-back Emerson being replaced for a progressive Jorginho. It was certainly a fractious derby with fouls aplenty (32) and nine bookings over the 90 minutes, though there definitely should have been more. Matteo Guendouzi was fortunate not to have given away a first-half penalty after hauling down Abraham off the ball, while already on a booking.

Jorginho, booked 20 minutes after coming on, should have seen red after an overzealous challenge on Guendouzi near the centre circle. Referee Craig Pawson saw the foul but instead brandished a card to Alexandre Lacazette for dissent - five minutes later, the Italian wheeled away to celebrate Chelsea's equaliser after a costly Bernd Leno error from Mason Mount's freekick.

Four minutes later, Tammy completed the comeback to win the match on a devastating counter-attack - turning Mustafi inside out after being teed up by Willian, before converting from close-range. So, here's a look at the best and worst performers from Chelsea's smash-and-grab victory in north London: confining Mikel Arteta to his first defeat as Gunners boss.


#5 Flop: Emerson

Emerson struggled and should have done better to deny Aubameyang before being replaced
Emerson struggled and should have done better to deny Aubameyang before being replaced

Defensively lax and exposed too often, Emerson should have done better to tightly man-mark Aubameyang in the build-up from Mesut Ozil's corner. Instead he was caught ball-watching and the Gabon international duly took advantage of sloppy positioning to punish him with a diving headed finish from close-range.

Again culpable as Arsenal frequently broke down his side, the Italian international offered inadequate defensive protection for Fikayo Tomori and wasn't a reliable passing outlet (69.2% pass success) either.

The 25-year-old might have started to settle and improve as the match continued, but was clearly struggling as Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Reiss Nelson continued their combination play, enjoying success down that side.

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An abrupt alteration was an effective measure of Lampard's frustration and awareness a change was needed, so Emerson couldn't really have any complaints about being replaced.

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Published 30 Dec 2019, 08:54 IST
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