Last year when Arsenal visited Stamford Bridge, Arsene Wenger was celebrating his 1000th game in charge, and this year sees another anniversary for the manager, as this game marks Wenger’s 18 years at Arsenal. He will certainly be hoping this landmark has a happier outcome than last year, as Arsenal were beaten 6-0 by the Blues. The two sides go in to this game as the only remaining Premier League teams yet to lose.
So here are a few stats about both sides before the two meet tomorrow afternoon:
1. Diego Costa bounced back from his goal drought that lasted all but a game, heading home in the 59th minute against Aston Villa. The in-form striker recorded a further four shots on target last weekend, meaning he has had 15 shots on target in total this season, five more than his next challenger, Sergio Agüero. Costa has scored a goal every 62 minutes and 23 seconds this season, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. Although Jose Mourinho has said that Costa’s run of form will not last forever, he will certainly be hoping that it can carry through to this weekend’s game at least. Costa is 10/3 with 888sport to score the first goal on Sunday.
2. Chelsea’s wingers displayed plenty of pace and energy last weekend, clocking the two fastest speeds any Chelsea player run this season. According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Eden Hazard was recorded running at 33.9km/h while Willian ran at 33.1km/h. Should both players make the starting lineup on Sunday, they are likely to be two of the biggest threats to Arsenal with their combination of pace and skill on the flanks.
3. Nemanja Mati? has been an ever-present fixture in heart of Chelsea’s midfield this season, playing every minute of Premier League football. The Serbian has been extremely impressive this season, and this was reflected by his statistics against Aston Villa, with a pass completion rate of 95.1%. He also completed the second most passes in the opposition half out of the Chelsea team, with 55, only beaten by Cesc Fábregas (88), according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.
4. With Aaron Ramsey and Mikel Arteta ruled out of Sunday’s clash, Arsenal will be hoping that Jack Wilshere can recover from his ankle injury in time to play on Sunday. Should he not be fit in time, Arsenal may look to give Oxlade-Chamberlain the opportunity to play in his preferred central position against Chelsea. The England international has recorded the fastest sprint speed of any Premier League player season, with a top speed of 35.2km/h, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.
5. Calum Chambers currently has the best minutes-per-tackle ratio out of the Arsenal squad. The versatile youngster has made a successful tackle every 26 minutes, with sixteen tackles in his 433 minutes played so far this season, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. With Arsenal’s injury troubles in defence, Chambers could be set for another start against Chelsea, and could be in for his biggest test yet.
6. With Ramsey missing, the pressure will be on Mesut Özil to have the biggest impact going forward. In the Premier League, Özil has the fifth most passes in opposition territory, with 253, having played a game less than those above him, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. Arsenal fans will hope that this positive play can translate in to assists this weekend.