Chelsea are on a six match winning streak and looking very impressive. When this fact came up over the weekend amongst my red and white friends the first thing that got mentioned was that not so long ago we soundly beat them 3-0. This is obviously correct but truth be told we never beat the current formation; the winning formula that Conte has managed to find. On the subject of Conte for a moment; there is an interesting comparison going on out there between the Italian who clearly does everything possible to encourage his players and Mourinho who has no qualms about publiclly berating his: fairly obvious which of those two strategies is reaping more reward.
No, we may have beaten Chelsea but we did not beat the current formula; I mean, if we were to beat them next week then that would be a different story; we would and should crow about such a victory from the roof tops.
The title of this post: Are Chelsea better than Arsenal was a thought that sprang into my mind just after they had beaten City; I didn’t watch the game so the result of 1-3 away was all I had to go on before the start of the West Ham – Arsenal game and that score line was scarily impressive.
I continued pondering this while watching Oxlaide-Chamberlain and Monreal wreak havoc down West Ham’s flank and while Monreal may have an excuse for not being able to deliver the killer pass, Oxlaide-Chamberlain doesn’t. Alex was pants and as hard as I tried I could not stop myself from thinking Oxlaide-Chamberlain is no Hazard. The Belgian can use both feet and he has excellent close control. Then there is Walcott. Theo’s close control is so bad that Sanchez and Ozil are playing with a man short which although they are better than anything Chelsea have they cannot do is all on their own. In a nut shell Willian is so much better than Walcott.
It was still nil nil at the Olympic Stadium and I was thinking that over the length of a season those two advantages that Chelsea have will surely make a decisive difference.
I watched Match of the Day later that evening wanting to see how good Chelsea were and to my surprise I quickly realised how lucky they had been to win the way they did. It was not the all conquering performance that I feared. David Luis should have been sent off and Debruyne should have converted the sitter, not to mention the umpteen other golden chances Man City had to put that game out of Chelsea’s reach.
Fabregas was back and he sent one of his trade mark majestic forty yards passes that found Henry who used his body to shield himself from the ineffectual Otamendi before firing home to level the score. The only thing is of course is that it wasn’t Henry it was Costa. Meanwhile Arsenal had gone ahead at the Olympic Stadium with a Sanchez-Ozil combo and the reassuring realisation hit me that Chelsea can only win the title if the Elephant man stays fit for the length of the campaign; it can happen, the last time they won the league they had hardly any injuries as was the same last year with Leicester but these are rarities.
So the balance starts to swing back to the Good Guys because although the loss of Sanchez would be painful we still have Giroud, Welbeck, Perez and even Walcott.
We have a better defence than they do and we have more defensive back up. On that subject didn’t City look pants at the back, very poor? Leicester may have won the league with a lot of luck on the injury front but their defence was rock solid; there is no way that can be said of either City or Chelsea for that matter.
Arsenal, although, having gone one up were not dominating as they should have against a poor West Ham side. Enter Ramsey exit Walcott and hay presto we suddenly took complete control and as you know we ended up thrashing West Ham 1-5.
As to whether Arsenal are better than Chelsea only time will tell, the league does not lie. I know who my money is on.
An LB offering.