Chelsea 2 v Arsenal 0

Can there be any positives to take from this defeat at Stamford Bridge? Well the good news is that Arsenal actually played much better than their loss to West Bromwich, but in their tormentor in chief Didier Drogba, they once again suffered. With half time rapidly approaching, Arsenal had been playing some decent football and you wondered who the home side actually was. That was until a carbon copy of his two goal at the Emirates undid all Arsenal’s hard work.

Fan

Ashley Cole was booed at every touch as you would expect, but it was his cross that squirmed its way to the feet of the Ivorian to score off the post. Growing up in France Drogba readily admits to being an Arsenal fan, but his love for scoring against Arsenal has been a fact that Arsene Wenger’s men just cannot come to terms with.

Theme

It could and should have been so different for the Gunners who made a bright start, with Marouane Chamakh seeing his first minute header deflected for a corner. From that corner, Laurent Koscielny managed to get the freedom of Chelsea defence, but his header went over the bar,when it seemed easier to score. The theme was to continue, with Andrey Arshavin and Samir Nasri creating chances that had the quality to be goals, but still Chelsea held firm.

Challenge

At the other end, Lukasz Fabianski was getting into the thick of the action, getting down well to save from Drogba who slipped Gael Clichy for the first time. There was a nasty studs up challenge by Michael Essien on Abou Diaby, but the France player got up and returned for the second half.

Instrumental

For all their possession, Arsenal just could not find the net, and that theme was to continue in the second half. Chamakh headed wide from Samir Nasri’s corner, with Diaby’s effort from the impressive Jack Wilshere looping for a corner. It was all one way traffic and not what the home fans had expected as a now thick blue line held back to raging red tide. Ramires who was so instrumental in the opener clearly felled Chamakh in the area, but referee Mike Dean waved play on.Just past the hour mark, the Moroccan was unable to latch onto Nasri’s pass as Petr Cech smothered the ball.

Clear

On came Tomas Rosicky for Diaby with 20 minutes to play and he soon saw a shot held by Cech. The home support showed their frustration, but still Chelsea held the lead. With 120 minutes left, Rociky crossed for Chamakh to rise and head clear, but sadly for Arsenal, it was the wrong side of the upright.

Positives

In a rare foray out of defence, Koscielny held back Nicolas Anelka to give away a free kick close the the Arsenal 18 yard line. Up stepped Alex to thunder through a gap the Florent Malouda had made in the wall and as Alex Song and Arshavin turned away, the ball swept into Fabianski’s net. So it was another loss, but given the absence of so many first team players, this can actually be seen as a positive that Wenger’s side can build on.