If there’s one particular soccer match that will be worth watching this Saturday, August 17, it’s definitely the upcoming clash between Chelsea and Arsenal. The Gunners have had a bit of a rough spell getting completely dismantled by Manchester City on their home turf! Worst, criticism has begun flying in towards Arsenal’s new coach. But it’s far too early to say that it’s anyone’s fault just now. The truth is that leadership changes are tough, and the exit of Arsene Wenger has definitely not been the easiest thing to handle.
Chelsea, meanwhile seem composed. The team managed to defeat Huddersfield Town with 3-0 which definitely came as a confidence boost for the Blues who are now preparing to take on a rather more serious opponent. Following their defeat with 2-0 to Man City, the Gunners are returning to Stamford Bridge to attempt and win a hard game. Should they succeed, though, the embarrassing rout against City will be forgiven.
At this point, though, even a draw with Chelsea would seem like an achievement given the temporary setbacks in the squad of Arsenal.
Emery, Is He to Become a Public Enemy?
Unai Emery definitely has reasons for concern. He’s not only supposed to top the performance of former coach Wenger, but he should improve upon it. Especially after the first defeat. Still, Emery is not overconfident about the task that he now has at hand.
He may be fielding both Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, opting for a more aggressive overall strategy that will hopefully help the team get back on its feet. Meanwhile, the team will still rely on Petr Cech at the goal, even though Cech omitted two points in the last game.
Emery could also consider a swap with the other goalkeeper, Bernd Leno, although it’s unlikely as goalkeepers need more experience to cut their teeth and the match against Chelsea is both more demanding and important.
After the Injuries, Everyone’s Back
With some of the players recuperating after an injury, some good news is the return of Nacho Monreal who plays in the defense. Monreal may now be coming back to defend for his team. Emery is rotating his players and giving a lot of the new talents a field to shine, but with the stakes being so high, he may think twice before fielding Danny Welbeck, another striker, and Lucas Torreira.
Torreira, though is said to have made the cut and play against Chelsea, and finally be afforded the opportunity to contribute to the team’s effort. Chelsea and Arsenal’s recent history isn’t so stilted though. They most recently played in a pre-season friendly finishing with a draw and judging by both teams’ performance then, they are fairly well-matched to offer spectators and fans a soccer derby of the highest order.
Even then, Chelsea are coming into this game with what appears to be a major boost in their confidence from the previous game whereas dark clouds seem to have gathered over Arsenal. A silver lining can be seen in Arsenal’s overall experience as a squad though, and Saturday may be an excellent opportunity for them to prove their qualities.