Arsenal v Chelsea Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
January 15, 2019
Emirates Stadium - Premier League
Arsenal host Chelsea on Saturday evening, looking to get back to winning ways following a dire run of results over the past month. The Blues may be doing slightly better but are inconsistent at best, and have four games to play over the next ten eleven days.
Chelsea won in a thrilling, end to end game in the second game of the season. Sarri's side looked comfortable having secured an early two goal lead, however, two Arsenal goals within four minutes turned the game around, with the Gunners spurning a number of easy chances only for Marcus Alonso to score the winner.
Unai Emery will most likely make changes to the side that lost to West Ham, and is unlikely to field two out-and-out strikers against the Blues. Pierre Emerick Aubameyang has been the in-from man for the manager, and is therefore likely to get the nod over Alexandre Lacazette.
Maurizio Sarri has come under criticism for his reluctance to rotate, but will likely stick to his preferred XI again on Sunday. Eden Hazard will field yet again as a centre-forward, with Willian and Pedro on either flank and Marcus Alonso providing much needed height from left-back.
Arsenal v Chelsea Preview and Predictions
Following their stunning unbeaten run, Arsenal's season appears to have come unstuck in recent weeks. A loss to Southampton has been followed by cup defeat to Spurs, a hammering by Liverpool, and, perhaps most damningly of all, their failure to score in the 1-0 against West Ham.
It was not the result against a decent Hammers side, but the way in which the Gunners played that has drawn criticism. The three man defence, a source of defensive solidarity during their winning run, saw Emery's midfield overran, with Granit Xhaka unable to create, and sloppy defensively. Likewise, with Mesut Ozil left out of the squad, apparently to keep him fit for Sunday's game, Arsenal's two strikers were forced to feed of scraps, completely negating the purpose of playing both.
Against Chelsea, such a tactical misjudgement would be suicide, with counter-attacking teams getting the most joy against the Blues. Sarri has been working on instilling his possession based style of football, but this has often seen players play a safe pass rather than a risky offensive manoeuvre. As a result, the Blues have become relatively predictable in attack, but only against sides that are set up to counter the midfield talents of Jorginho.
A target for criticism in recent weeks, the Italian's influence over the game cannot be judged by assists and goals, although he does need to improve in both. Instead, the fact that almost every team sacrifices a player to man-mark Jorginho is evidence of his importance the Blues, even if his metronomic passing often goes under the radar.
Until the Blues get a regularly scoring striker, they are very much beatable. However, it is up to Emery to find a system that will achieve this, something he completely failed to do last week.
Aubamayang to score anytime at 11/8
The Gabon striker is in great form at the moment and may exploit David Luiz's lack of pace.
Both teams to score at 8/15
Arsenal have hit the target in all but two league games, and may go at Chelsea hard from the offset.