We have the Arsenal team news for their upcoming match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Both sides come into the game with wins in respective European competitions as the Blues got the better of Dinamo Zagreb 2-1 in the Champions League, while the Gunners advanced to the last 16 of the Europa League.
All five points that the Gunners have dropped in the Premier League this season have come on the road. Mikel Arteta has set a record in the last two seasons, leading Arsenal to two consecutive wins against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and is aiming to win three successive Premier League London derbies away from home, for the very first time.
Takehiro Tomiyasu came off with an injury against Zurich and will be unavailable for the derby. Matt Turner is still being plagued by a groin problem, so Aaron Ramsdale should be given the nod again.
Emile Smith Rowe – who has scored in each of Arsenal’s last two wins at Stamford Bridge is still out after undergoing groin surgery, but Mohamed Elneny has returned to training much earlier than expected from a serious hamstring injury. However, the Egyptian midfielder will likely need more time to get up to speed.
The injury that Bukayo Saka sustained against Nottingham Forest was only a minor one, and he was able to come on as a substitute in the Europa League, while Oleksandr Zinchenko was also finally back in the squad after a troublesome calf injury.
Chelsea’s trio of long-term absentees – Wesley Fofana, Reece James and N’Golo Kante – all remain sidelined. Carney Chukwuemeka and Ben Chilwell are also out with injuries. The Blues boss Graham Potter has already ruled Kepa Arrizabalaga out of contention too, so Edouard Mendy will keep his place in goal.
Denis Zakaria’s strong debut ended with a minor contact injury, but it should not rule him out of the Chelsea vs Arsenal game. Mateo Kovacic should also be back from injury to take his spot.
Player To Watch Out For – Raheem Sterling
After graduating from Liverpool’s youth system, Raheem Sterling was promoted to the senior side in 2012. Sterling won his first major trophy in club football in his maiden season with Manchester City when the club bagged the EFL Cup.
Sterling’s greatest strength is the threat he provides on goal. He might not have quite the finishing ability, but his movement is comparable with the very best. Sterling offers a guaranteed threat – he has directly contributed a combined 190 goals in the top division in 331 appearances for Liverpool and City (stats via Transfermarkt) – while also providing tactical flexibility and experience.
He’s played in a variety of roles and positions, featuring in the hole behind a front two, as a second striker, a left winger, a right winger, and a false nine. Such versatility is a testament to the range of technical abilities Sterling possesses as well as his tactical acumen.
His spatial awareness is his strongest asset. Sterling excels at finding pockets of space within the opposition’s defensive structure to receive and carry the ball. His dribbling over long distances is impressive, enabling him to drop deep and make extended forays forward himself.
He’s also an underrated presence physically. Sterling is remarkably effective at retaining possession under pressure and riding opposition challenges. His combination of strength and speed, along with his aforementioned tactical awareness, makes him an extremely forceful presser.
Perhaps the biggest pitfall in Sterling’s game is his decision-making. His choice and execution on certain passes can be suspect, while he can often be overeager to carry the ball himself and subsequently lose possession in traffic.
Under Pep Guardiola, he benefitted tremendously from being given an extremely detailed tactical structure which provided him with a greater amount of guidance in making attacking decisions.
Arsenal Predicted Starting Lineup (4-2-3-1):
Aaron Ramsdale (GK); Ben White (RB), William Saliba (CB), Gabriel (CB), Oleksandr Zinchenko (LB); Granit Xhaka (CDM), Thomas Partey (CDM); Bukayo Saka (RW), Martin Odegaard (CAM), Gabriel Martinelli (LW); Gabriel Jesus (ST)
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Chelsea 2-2 Arsenal
Chelsea seem to be in a vulnerable state after their 4-1 demolition to Brighton & Hove Albion. This should be one of the games where Arsenal should be clear favourites being top of the table and looking very consistent, but expect Chelsea to make a comeback in the derby and share the spoils with their rivals.
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