Chelsea vs Arsenal: A London Derby preview
Local Derbies are the most fun when two rival clubs square off with significant table implications on the line in addition to the obvious bragging rights for the supporters within the city. While this matchup poses less of a significance on the standings, it does provide a huge opportunity for one club to have the upper hand in bragging rights for the foreseeable future.
Arsenal have dominated this fixture over the last two years, securing a perfect 4-0 record in that time period. This comes with little surprise to Premier League followers as Arsenal’s club form has seen a massive boon at the same time that Chelsea’s club form has cratered to – perhaps – the lowest it’s been this century. With Arsenal set up to attempt a second consecutive title charge this year, it represents an opportunity for a 5th consecutive derby win and the moniker of “Best Club in London” (despite what the loud shouts from the recently awoken Spurs fans might contest).
Yet this specific fixture does provide a unique opportunity for Chelsea to strike back and provide a trademark win for their season at a time where Arsenal may be vulnerable.
Arsenal – what it looks like in EPL Week 9 Betting for The North London Club
The Gunners came into this season with a stronger, deeper squad that netted some serious experience in their previous campaign that pairs nicely with their still very young core group of players. Declan Rice was brought in to anchor the midfield and David Raya swapped in to provide a better ball playing option at Keeper. The results have been positive so far as Arteta has once again gotten his side to the top of the table and have yet to experience their first loss of the Premier League season.
While their form has been good, it has not come without a cost. In their signature win of the season so far against Manchester City, Arsenal saw injuries to Leandro Troussard and William Saliba to add to the injury that Bukayo Saka sustained while playing in their Champions League match vs Lens just a few days prior. All 3 missed international duty as they attempted to speed up their recovery time but all 3 remain doubts for their availability vs Chelsea this weekend.
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A week 9 Chelsea side – Can they rebound against a team that has been fantastic this year in Premiership play?
A cautionary tale on how quickly your club can go from “European Elite” to “European Meme”, Chelsea have provided fans and pundits alike with seemingly endless content this season. When you spend close to a Billion pounds on player transfers in fewer than 18 months, you expose yourself to the jokes and ire of the masses should you not achieve the results that are expected from such ambitious expenditures.
To say Chelsea have failed to live up to those expectations would be an understatement. Yes, they have had their fair share of injury misfortune – Christopher Nkunku would surely have provided a boost in the offensive output and Reece James has been their key man at both ends of the pitch in recent seasons – but the money spent in the transfer market was meant to insulate the club from the pitfalls of an injury crisis yet Chelsea sit in the bottom half of the table.
The good news for Chelsea fans is that their form prior to the break seemed to be making a turn for the better. After 3 consecutive games without a goal, Chelsea won back to back matches while managing to score 6 goals (more than half of their entire season’s tally to this point). Cole Palmer seems to be the interim answer for Nkunku’s absence, Sterling continues to have one of his better seasons in recent memory and maybe, just maybe, Nicolas Jackson has turned a corner and can find some form while the rest of the Chelsea walking wounded heal up.
Pick and Prediction for this Arsenal v. Chelsea Week 9 Premiership Premier match
It is near impossible to sit here and try to cap this match at this point in the week. There are too many “game time decisions” on players for both sides. The following is a list of players who may or may not be available for the match and we likely won’t find out until an hour before kickoff for many:
Injury concerns prior to Matchday 9 EPL
Arsenal: Saka, Troussard, Saliba
Chelsea: Palmer, Disasi, Badiashile, Jackson, Broja
Arsenal were able to make due without Saka and Troussard for the match vs City and signs indicate that Saliba might be willing to “play through” whatever toe ailment he has. Chelsea will continue to shuffle in players from their shopping bag while they attempt to find some form of consistency.
If you think I’m being overly cautious (cowardly), look no further than the lines that books have set for this match to see why:
Chelsea (+195) / Draw (+245) / Arsenal (+135)
Does anyone think, based on performances from this season, Arsenal should be plus-money in this one? Surely the squad with 4 consecutive victories over the other, the squad joint first in the table while the other sits in the bottom half, and the squad that has yet to lose a game this season deserves to be more heavily favored than that?
It looks like a trap, smells like a trap, and is probably a trap. I’m a square, so I’m taking the league leaders at plus-money and getting pissy when my hand gets caught in the snare. Sharps are probably taking Chelsea DNB +110 and posting their betslips on Twitter conveniently after Sterling steers home a tap in from Enzo Fernandez. You decide if you can live with missing out on Arsenal plus-money over the biggest meme in Europe.
This is an Article Written by Kicks & Picks
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