On Sunday afternoon, Chelsea and Arsenal played out a goalless draw at Stamford Bridge. The biggest talking about the game turned out to be a late red card for Chelsea defender David Luiz.
Chelsea made a bright start to the game, with former Blues goalkeeper Petr Cech having to produce good saves from Victor Moses and then Pedro. The home side threatened again, as Cesc Fabregas played a one-two with Willian before the Spaniard fire an effort towards goal only for a combination of Danny Welbeck and Cech at the near post to snub out the danger.
The home side continued to dominate the attacking play and Alvaro Morata headed wide of goal from a Cesar Azpilicueta cross. The referee assistant’s flag spared the Spaniard blushes.
Arsenal came close to taking the lead with their first threat on the quarter of an hour. Hector Bellerin surged down the Arsenal right and produced a good cross to Welbeck, whose header went wide of the far post.
The Gunners threatened once a minute later. Bellerin was involved again, as the wing-back found space behind Marcos Alonso and found Alexandre Lacazette in the area. However, Chelsea ‘keeper Thibaut Courtois got down well to keep out the Frenchman’s low effort.
Courtois had to get down low soon afterwards to keep out a powerful long-range effort from Gunners wing-back Sead Kolasinac. The Blues went straight up the other end, though. Cesc Fabregas produced a superb through ball to put Pedro through on goal.
The former Barcelona star delayed his effort on goal and in the end, Cech kept out his low effort, while Morata headed wide from inside the penalty area.
The game then settled slightly. Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka attempted a long-range effort just after the half-hour mark that went wide of the Courtois’ near post. Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny also hooked an effort well wide of the far post after some light Gunners pressure.
The Gunners came close to taking the lead with five minutes left on the clock in the first half. Midfielder Aaron Ramsey stumbled his way into the box before poking an effort against the far post. It looked as though Lacazette was going to equalise only for the Frenchman to conspire to fire wide with a volley a few yards out.
The home side fired the first effort on goal of the second half, as Willian fired a low powerful effort towards Cech’s goal, but the Czech ‘keeper down well to keep the shot out.
The game went into a cagey period, with the only attempt on goal arriving on the hour mark as Willian cut in from the right wing and fired well off target from distance.
Both teams decided to send on their match-winners from the bench with around 20 minutes left on the clock, as Arsenal brought on Alexis Sanchez and Chelsea introduced Belgian winger Eden Hazard.
Arsenal look to have taken the lead with 15 minutes left on the clock. Grant Xhaka’s wide free-kick was glanced home by Shkodran Mustafi. However, the referee’s assistant flagged the German offside, with replays showing that the decision was a correct one.
Hazard showed a touch of inspiration with just over ten minutes left. Belgian international cut in from the left flank and saw a powerful effort saved by Cech in the centre of his goal. Fabregas saw a wild effort deflect wide in the last five minutes, while from the resulting corner Moses saw a shot on goal blocked.
Chelsea were down to ten men with just two minutes left, as David Luiz saw red for a lung on Arsenal’s Kolasinac.
Arsenal looked to take advantage of their extra man. However, they could not make a breakthrough and the Gunners will have gone home happy with a point from their trip to the champions.
Who was Arsenal’s man of the match against Chelsea?