This weekend is going to be a belter as Arsenal and Chelsea will go head to head against each other at the Emirates for their 6th round of matches in the Premier League. The two teams are tied on points with 10 from their 5 matches so far but Arsenal sit one place above their rivals due to a superior goal difference.
The match will tactically very interesting with Arsene Wenger and Antonio Conte battling for tactical supremacy. The two teams have spent considerable money in the summer transfer window bringing in some quality players, who will look to prove their worth on Saturday. Despite the game being at the Emirates, facing an opposition with the quality of Chelsea is not an easy task by any means. Let’s look at how the home team can hurt the visitors on the 24th of September.
Arsenal need to control the game making use of their strong midfield and set the tempo early on. Chelsea have been a bit shaky to start games this season, which the Gunners need to exploit. Arsenal have always been a team capable of utilising and dominating possession, a bit more so now with the players available for the first team.
Effective use of possession in the first half will be crucial as with a potential solid presence of a double pivot in behind the creative Mesut Ozil and the energetic Alexis Sanchez, the home side can cause Conte’s team a lot of problems if they like their previous matches take time to fully settle at the back.
Targeting David Luiz
The presence of David Luiz at the back should be a great opportunity to exploit for Arsenal’s attacking players. The Brazilian has already been involved in some mistakes which has cost his team goals since his second coming and the inexplicable urge of the defender to vacate his position in order to make forward runs haven’t died down it seems. Setting a trap for Luiz to vacate his position can be an excellent tactic if Arsenal can get some players to execute good runs into the box from the midfield.
Countering The Playmaker
A very strong performance in the final minutes of the games has been a trend for Chelsea so far this season. The Blues have managed to score some very significant late goals in matches and a lot of that had to do with the arrival of Cesc Fabregas on the pitch. Antonio Conte has used Fabregas as a sub in the second half where the Spaniard has been able to make an impact both in the Premier League as well as in the EFL Cup as well.
In their last Cup game against Leicester, Chelsea conceded two early goals but came back to take the game into extra time and then Fabregas struck twice to secure a breathtaking 4-2 victory. Whether it was providing an assist or scoring the goal or the movement, Fabregas has wreaked havoc for the opposition late on in the games and Arsenal needs to be extra careful in the final fifteen minutes especially if they are in the lead by then.
Fabregas, as we all know, can orchestrate the game and if Wenger can nullify his former student then it would result in taking most of the sting out of the Chelsea attack. Shackling the playmaker will greatly increase the chances of a victory for the home side.
Arka Tarun Mukherjee
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