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%BOOKIE_OFFER%

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Unai Emery’s Premier League adventure did not get off to the best start. His Arsenal side were comprehensively beaten by champions Manchester City, with their performance showing it will take longer than a few months to de-Wenger the club fully.

\n\n

 

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The fixture list hasn’t been kind to Emery, who faces Chelsea on Saturday at Stamford Bridge, which may well extend the wait for his first Premier League point.

\n\n

 

\n\n

It was clear he tried to impose his play-out-from-the-back-centric system on Arsenal straight away, to limited success against a tenacious, high-pressing City side. Petr Cech – surprisingly preferred in goal to £22m man Bernd Leno – looked woefully out of his depth with the ball at his feet, which resulted in jeers from home fans when he opted to finally hoof the ball as far as he could.

\n\n

 

\n\n

Cech almost provided us with possibly the funniest moment in Premier League history; turning round and passing the ball backwards towards his own goal, missing the post by inches. It would have eclipsed Loris Karius passing a goal kick out for an opposition corner last season.

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Luckily, Arsenal fans are a notoriously level-headed, patient bunch, so I can see no reason at all why they’d get restless if early-season results go awry.

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Chelsea recovered from their Community Shield disappointment by beating Huddersfield 3-0 at The John Smith’s. It was an impressive performance which included league debuts for Jorginho and Kepa, who both looked assured.

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Despite the three goals, the highlight of the match was Maurizio Sarri – banned from smoking on the touchline in England – opting to chew a cigarette butt instead. This isn’t relevant information at all, but it’s properly grim. The fella’s a character.

\n\n

 

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Chelsea v Arsenal Betting Tips & Preview

It's shaping up to be an exciting spectacle at Stamford Bridge.

Ryan Elliott
 | 
Wed, 15 Aug, 9:27 AM

 

Unai Emery’s Premier League adventure did not get off to the best start. His Arsenal side were comprehensively beaten by champions Manchester City, with their performance showing it will take longer than a few months to de-Wenger the club fully.

 

The fixture list hasn’t been kind to Emery, who faces Chelsea on Saturday at Stamford Bridge, which may well extend the wait for his first Premier League point.

 

It was clear he tried to impose his play-out-from-the-back-centric system on Arsenal straight away, to limited success against a tenacious, high-pressing City side. Petr Cech – surprisingly preferred in goal to £22m man Bernd Leno – looked woefully out of his depth with the ball at his feet, which resulted in jeers from home fans when he opted to finally hoof the ball as far as he could.

 

Cech almost provided us with possibly the funniest moment in Premier League history; turning round and passing the ball backwards towards his own goal, missing the post by inches. It would have eclipsed Loris Karius passing a goal kick out for an opposition corner last season.

 

Luckily, Arsenal fans are a notoriously level-headed, patient bunch, so I can see no reason at all why they’d get restless if early-season results go awry.

 

Chelsea recovered from their Community Shield disappointment by beating Huddersfield 3-0 at The John Smith’s. It was an impressive performance which included league debuts for Jorginho and Kepa, who both looked assured.

 

Despite the three goals, the highlight of the match was Maurizio Sarri – banned from smoking on the touchline in England – opting to chew a cigarette butt instead. This isn’t relevant information at all, but it’s properly grim. The fella’s a character.

 

As for this match, the result is a mightily tough one to call. Both sides are in transitional periods, with their respective managers seeking to impose drastic culture changes.

One thing I’m not convinced about with both sides is their defence. Sokratis and Shkodran Mustafi don’t look like a centre-back partnership who will be ultra-reliable while under an attacking siege, while their left-back issues remain; Ainsley Maitland-Niles looking horribly exposed before he had to be substituted due to injury. Yes, it was against City, but the signs are not great.

 

Similarly with Chelsea, David Luiz’s return to the side was a surprise – particularly in place of the excellent Andreas Christensen – and I’m not convinced it’s the right decision from Sarri. Despite their clean sheet on Saturday, Huddersfield caused Chelsea problems and even hit the post, while the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette have the ability to inflict serious damage on The Blues’ defence.

You’ll be brave to plump on either side to win, but both teams to score looks like a great prospect. This should be a fantastic game of football, hopefully providing us with goals in the process.

 

One man who didn’t start for Chelsea last week was Eden Hazard. It appears Sarri wanted to ease the Belgian into domestic proceedings following a gruelling World Cup campaign, giving him a 15 minute cameo off the bench.

 

Everything is set up for Hazard to start on Saturday against Arsenal. While there is speculation surrounding him amidst interest from Real Madrid, he has got his head down and continued working hard for Chelsea, in stark contrast to another, far more overrated Belgian earlier in the window.

 

Arsenal’s defence looked terrified of Raheem Sterling, Riyad Mahrez, Sergio Aguero and Bernardo Silva last week, and they will be expecting much of the same from Hazard.

 

It’s unclear whether Sarri will play Hazard centrally in a Dries Mertens-type False 9, or in his preferred wide left position. Either way, he’s a man no defender in the world wants to play against, and he is looking like he’ll be Chelsea’s chief goal threat this season. He’s scored four league goals against Arsenal, and I’m backing him to add to his tally on the weekend and get on that scoresheet.

 

If there’s one player who won’t shirk a challenge, it’s Granit Xhaka. This should be an adrenaline-fuelled encounter, as Arsenal will be desperate to impose themselves on Chelsea. Should they lose this one, there is a very real chance they could end August bottom of the Premier League.  

 

Xhaka was carded 10 times in the league last season, so the likelihood of the Swiss finding his name in the book first is much higher than anyone else. That’s why I love this bet, the odds are brilliant for an eventuality which is far from outside the realms of possibility.

 

 

If you fancy an outside shot, Xhaka to be carded first is absolutely the one for you.

 

 

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