Chelsea 2 (Zouma 53, Chambers (O.G) 90) – Arsenal 0
Man of the Match – Cesc Fabregas (Chelsea)
Arsenal’s harrowing week continued, as they crashed to a 2-0 loss at Stamford Bridge, in controversial circumstances. Petr Cech returned to his old stomping ground, while Bellerin, Monreal and Walcott all started. John Terry started from the bench, and Kurt Zouma was named in his place.
Much of the pre-match talk surrounded the frosty relationship between the managers, Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho. With no handshake offered or taken between the two, at the Community Shield game, Mourinho ensured there was one this time round, albeit any warmth in it. He stood at the players entrance, waiting for Wenger, and offered his hand, so Wenger wouldn’t miss. The Arsenal manager shook back, but didn’t bother looking at the Chelsea manager.
It was only a prequel to what would turn out to be a fiery contest between London’s premier clubs. The first half of the match was a contest of two midfields, trying to outdo each other, and it burst open right towards the end. Chelsea striker Diego Costa, who had been kept under hooks by Laurent Koscielny, so far, vented his anger by hauling Koscielny to the ground, having already put his hand into the Frenchman’s face moments earlier, when contesting a ball. Gabriel Paulista came to help his teammate, and confronted Costa, only to spark some shoves and pushes. Both men, who have had a spat in the past, whilst playing for Villarreal and Atletico Madrid respectively, were shown yellows. Costa continued to rile Gabriel, which ended in the Brazilian kicking out at Costa. Close television footage showed Gabriel didn’t even touch Costa. Mike Dean decided to send off Gabriel, a victory for Costa. The Brazilian born Spanish striker left the field eventually in the 82nd minute, with only a yellow card, despite another off-the-ball incident with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, late on.
10 man Chelsea took the lead, in only the 53rd minute, when Zouma headed in a Fabregas free-kick. From there on, it was smooth sailing for the blues. In the 79th minute, Arsenal were reduced to 9 men, when Cazorla received a second yellow for a foul on Fabregas. Arsenal’s miserable afternoon was compounded when a shot from Eden Hazard bobbled into the net, off Callum Chambers.
Jai Arsenal 🙂
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