Something had to give! Chelsea, having not conceded in around 6 hours of football, and Arsenal undefeated so far this season, went head-on at North Londonai??i??s plush green ground with a possibility of damaging the small records intact so far. It was Chelsea, without Didier Drogba, bringing back three points from The Emirates, deserved or not, they will now look at the league title as a very realistic possibility.

Chelsea, with troubled captain John Terry starting, looked quite assured at the back, decent in the middle of the park, less than sharp in the attacking third, but their usual calm was intact and they meant business from the word go. Arsenal looked a bit out of sorts throughout the game, that bad day had to come, and it came for too many players at one time. Key men who have impressed so far this season, failed to build any kind of tempo, often relying on individual brilliance to drive the team to glory. Nobody raised the hand and none delivered!

Arsenal Gameplay And Strategy

How they started?

[4-2-3-1] – Mannone, Jenkinson, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Arteta, Diaby, Ramsey, Cazorla, Podolski, Gervinho

With the ridiculous behavior of Theo Walcottai??i??s agent being held as a cause for his not starting games, Arsenal were left with the Welsh captain Aaron Ramsey to start wide. Arsene Wenger, continuing with his whole skewed concept of turning wingers into strikers, deployed Gervinho down the middle. With his finishing being probably the worst in the four tiers of English football, it is a challenge that Arsene might be relishing. Ironically, Theo wants to get converted too, but for that he needs to put pen on paper, a funny situation at the club from a neutralai??i??s point of view.

Since Podolski has this whole tendency of drifting down the middle, the Arsenal team provided no width and headache at all to Chelseaai??i??s full-backs. Mikel Arteta was his usual self, clinging on to the ball like it was his new-born baby, distributing the ball all over the park, making sure his passing success rate was kept intact at Opta Corners. He started alongside perennially crocked Abou Diaby, who gave him company for 17 minutes before attending to the services of his favorite Arsenal Medical Room. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, still in his teenage years, yet with the maturity levels thrice that of Mikael Silvestre, came on, and did everything right, without being his usual flamboyant self, as if he opened the ai???Arsene Wenger – Basics of Footballai??? book every time he collected the ball. Aaron Ramsey, still having to deal with the occasional nightmares of damaging Ryan ai???Not that kind of a guyai??? Shawcrossai??i??s shin, looked rusty, often miss-passing and roaming around aimlessly around the green, not knowing what exactly he was supposed to do.

To the surprise of everybody, including Koscielny, Per Mertesacker, Arsenalai??i??s best defender so far this season, was dropped onto the bench. Thomas Vermaelen came back straight into the side, not being able to cope up with Arteta wearing the arm-band. Both the defenders looked quite assured at the back, except for a few moments of madness which led to the Chelsea goals. One of them included mistakes from both center-backs. The Belgian, with the excessive pressure of the ai???Highest Scoring Defender in the Leagueai??i?? for two years, ventured forward into his usual mad runs, then got caught out of position, having to gallop back to foul Fernando Torres for a stupid free-kick.

Juan Mataai??i??s free-kick was goal-bound, but seeing that no Chelsea player was interested to poke it, Koscielny stood up for the cause and obliged with a beautifully deflected own-goal, giving a perfect face-palm moment on 60,000 Gooners for the photographerai??i??s to capture. Jenkinson and Gibbs did a great job at full-back, but failed to provide any attacking threat. Gibbs, having to reason with himself that he can be a better dribbler than Ronaldinho, often dribbled past a few Chelsea players and gave away the ball, leaving himself stranded at the opponentai??i??s half.

Overall, it was a timid performance from Arsenal, the recurrent talks about a changed defensive look can now bury itself in thick sand. This team needs to bring back the discipline yet again; they were just going through the motion and hoped for things to fall into place because Steve Bould said so! Arsene needs to thrust Podolski back into the top of the attack, keep Gervinho on the left-wing, because that is where he is most effective (that fantastically taken goal was certainly an aberration to the norm) and play one of Theo and Oxlade on the right-wing, those are totally under-utilized if not given 90 minutes to run like mad men against opposition full-backs.

Chelsea Gameplay and Strategy

How they started?

[4-2-3-1] ai??i?? Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Terry, Cole, Mikel, Ramires, Oscar, Hazard, Mata, Torres

Ashley Cole, who was once a hero at Arsenal, kept his calm and cool, even though the boos heard every time he touched a ball will give Robin van Persie the creeps about what will happen when he visits The Emirates later this season. The Englishman along with his compatriot John Terry hardly faced any threat from Arsenal as Ramsey and Gervinho were totally off-color in such a big game. Ivanovic and David Luiz, with their freshly developed simulation skills, continued their good work, making one particular Catalan very proud across the English Channel.

The midfield of Chelsea had Mikel and Ramires, the conceited flag-bearers of the most nauseating football strategy inArsenal English Football, made sure that they had Cazorla and Podolski in their pockets all day. They didnai??i??t even have had to go all Robbie Savage over Arsenalai??i??s midfield threat; such was the lack of intent from the Gunners. They connected well with Hazard and Mata all day long, quite satisfied with counting down the clock rather than spraying balls of real purpose.

Hazard, who has been touted as the greatest thing to happen to English Football since the departure of Alex Hleb, did everything possible to keep the EA developers working on Player skills busy. One audacious Rabona from him which could have been a proper cross proved the point even further! Juan Mata, who hasnai??i??t smiled since the cruel screening of the Passion of the Christ in his neighbourhood, did his bit, playing a role in both the goals, his dead-ball work improving every day. Finally, Fernando Torres, the 50 Million man, who sold more ai???When will he score?ai??i?? memes on Facebook than E Heskey last year, has arrived, it seems! He did the perfect act of ai???You think Iai??i??ll score with my head? There, Iai??i??ll flick it with my legai??i?? with Koscielny who was left holding his head in incredulity. Torres looked particularly sharp and is probably on the rise, maybe he will get back his Anfield form after all.

Overall, Chelsea did nothing fancy, they played to their strength, that is sit back and defend. They man-marked well and didnai??i??t leave any space for players like Cazorla, Chamberlain and Podolski to attack. They are in the top of the table without having played anything close to extraordinary. Roberto Di Matteo surely has something about him that is making this team click, so what if he is incapable of emoting.

Ai??****

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9 Responses to “Arsenal 1 – 2 Chelsea – Post Mortem : Koscielny Hands Over Three Points To Chelsea”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. Kunwar Deep Singh says:

    Overall, Chelsea did nothing fancy, they played to their strength, that is sit back and defend. – Great assessment after what hazard tried.. flicking the ball from behind the standing leg !

    • Srinidhi Iyengar says:

      I knew right away after reading the first two paras that whatever follows is a farce! I mean, were you watching the game on a parallel universal setting? The only good thing about the article is that you have a good command over your language which at times becomes an overkill owing to verbosity. Try your hands on a Page 3 article, will sell a million copies. Utterly disappointed with THT!

  2. saorabh says:

    What a load of tosh…I mean did you seriously saw the match…Mikel arteta and holding baby for christ sakes, he was marked out of the game by oscar and thus killing the engine room for Arsenal, once that was done carzola was easily shut out…About not playing Per then all I can say is when you have a slow CB against a team that has players to burn the rubber then you are always way more suspect to quick counters and that why he was not in the squad…About Chelsea doing nothing spectacular then how about coming to emirates against a extremely confident Arsenal and controlling the midfield especially first half against likes of Arteta, cazorla et all and do keep in mind that team is still trying to know each other…Above mentioned points are just tip of the iceberg and whole article is darn badly written. As a reader, I expect alot from this site and a piece like this certainly degrades the value of whole site.

    • Sura says:

      Then why don’t you start your own site..Smart ass. We’ll see how you do.
      What you are trying to do is make yourself sound smarter by criticizing someone
      who has been breaking down games and running this great site for a long time, Day in and day out.
      I think this was a great article with a very sharp sense of humor..
      Thank you!!

      • saorabh says:

        Its not about starting a site or not..just take a moment and pull your head out of your A** and read…My criticism is borne out of simple fact that I like what these guys are doing and I think highly of this site…if we have writers here just like the sunsport columnist then they will certainly lose readership…This was a poorly written article, its not even funny, and its wrong in lots of parts. If you are some part of this site then stop licking your bosses ar** and try and take criticism thats how your grow…oh on this note only, you should also grow a pair.

  3. Anirban says:

    Biased..from beginning to end..not worthy of the HT articles I come to expect.

  4. Terryblues says:

    What an epitome of bullshit this article is ! This is an article that would arise when a keyboard is given to a moron ! Just like his team! Sore Gooner Loser !!!

  5. Kishan Jambur says:

    The jokes poked at various players were unnecessary and in many cases irrelevant and inaccurate. Arsenal weren’t as bad as you projected them, neither were Chelsea as menial and moderate as you conveniently pictured them to be.

    I respect the articles on this website as well and I believe this one stands out as if it was written on some spoof website which just made itself look like THT to get more traffic.

    Take my criticism in whichever way you wish to, all I know is I have meant it in a constructive way, unlike your article.

    For the record, being a Chelsea fan, I still found the digs at Arsenal players unjustified, not to mention the Chelsea ones.

  6. Mark says:

    Wow, I am honestly shocked. I am so accustomed to reading good and accurate material on this site but this article was horrendous. I’m wondering if he only saw highlights for arsenal. Extremely bias article I must say. I knw you’re gutted that your arsenal team lost but the least we’d have expected u to do here was give an honest breakdown of the match. Not be a crying sour puss. Very very disappointed with THT