Chelsea might not be doing it in the most exciting way, but win against Arsenal today and they will be one victory shy of a first Premier League title since 2010.
These last few weeks of the season have hardly been vintage play from the Champions-elect – the Blues haven’t actually won a fixture by more than a goal since mid-January – but it’s certainly getting the job done.
Arsenal, meanwhile, are on a incredible run of nine wins in nine games, over two competitions, with the north Londoners last week booking their place in a second-straight FA Cup final.
With such a difference in form, will Arsene Wenger finally get his first victory over Jose Mourinho? He’s lost or drawn all previous 12 meetings.
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The Gunners boss will have to do so without Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Mikel Arteta, who are not yet match-fit.
Wenger was pessimistic on the prospects of Per Mertesacker’s involvement – saying he was 50-50 for the game – but the big German was spotted in Arsenal training yesterday so perhaps he’ll be a surprise addition to the squad after injuring his ankle against Reading last week.
Jose Mourinho, meanwhile, has a choice to make upfront – he was coy on the fitness of Diego Costa and said it will be a late decision regarding his involvement but the Daily Mail claimed yesterday he would definitely skip the game.
Loic Remy has already been confirmed out so that could mean Arsenal bogeyman Didier Drogba will start the game and youngster Dominic Solanke could be called up to the bench.
It’s over a year since Arsenal last failed to score in a league match at the Emirates – a 0-0 draw with Man United – but they have failed to find the net in their last four meetings against the Blues, whilst they’ve conceded ten.
Indeed when the two teams met in November, Arsenal failed to register a shot on target.
For Chelsea, they’ll be looking for a sixth straight away win and fifth consecutive Premier League win – but the last time they dropped points on the road was also in north London; a 5-3 defeat to Tottenham in January.
Arsenal have seen a turnaround of fortunes in the big games this season, with victories at Old Trafford and the Etihad, so it would be a big statement heading toward next season if they could add Mourinho and Chelsea to that list of scalps.
But the Blues will know that a win would let them wrap the title up at Leicester on Wednesday night and so are surely gunning for a victory.