Premier League Preview: Arsenal - Chelsea
The host holds a seven point lead over the visitor in the race for a top four position but a loss would let Di Matteo's side, Spurs and Newcastle back into the hunt.
By Jay Jaffa
Sagna, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Santos
Ramsey, Song, Rosicky
Walcott, Van Persie, Gervinho
Bosingwa, Cahill, Terry, Cole
Ramires, Mata, Sturridge
It may have the more demanding schedule but Chelsea arrives with a far lighter injury list than its host.
The Gunners have lost Mikel Arteta for the rest of the season with an ankle injury and he joins long-term absentees Per Mertesacker (ankle), Jack Wilshere (ankle) and Emmanuel Frimpong (knee).
There is better news for Francis Coquelin and Abou Diaby who are both expected to shake off knocks to make themselves available for the London derby, but Yossi Benayoun is ineligible because of his loan deal from the Blues.
Chelsea will have to get by without Branislav Ivanovic who will finish his three-game suspension after this clash.
On the injury front, David Luiz is expected to miss another week with a hamstring injury sustained in the FA Cup semifinal win over Tottenham. Ryan Bertrand (calf) and Oriel Romeu (illness) could both make the matchday squad.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Arsenal has won 12, drawn two and lost two of the last 16 games at the Emirates.
- The Gunners will be without Mikel Arteta for the remainder of the season and have not won a Premier League game without him this season.
- Robin van Persie has scored against 17 of the 19 Premier League clubs this campaign.
- The Dutch striker notched a hat trick in the 5-3 reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge, where Arsenal became the first side since Liverpool in 1996 to put five past Chelsea.
- Chelsea has only won three of the last 19 trips to Arsenal but those have all come in the last six visits.
- The Blues have conceded more goals (18) in the final 15 minutes than any other club in the Premier League.
- Didier Drogba (right) has scored eight Premier League goals against the Gunners.
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Top 3 Predictions
Arsenal FC 2-1 Chelsea FC
- 14.1 %
Arsenal FC 1-2 Chelsea FC
- 14.03 %
Arsenal FC 1-3 Chelsea FC
- 10.72 %
|England - Capital One Cup (League Cup) (CCUP)||2013-10-29||Arsenal FC 0 - Chelsea FC 2|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||2013-01-20||Chelsea FC 2 - Arsenal FC 1|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||2012-09-29||Arsenal FC 1 - Chelsea FC 2|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||2012-04-21||Arsenal FC 0 - Chelsea FC 0|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||2011-10-29||Chelsea FC 3 - Arsenal FC 5|
|2013-12-14||Manchester City 6 - Arsenal FC 3||EPL|
|2013-12-11||Napoli 2 - Arsenal FC 0||UCL|
|2013-12-08||Arsenal FC 1 - Everton 1||EPL|
|2013-12-04||Arsenal FC 2 - Hull City 0||EPL|
|2013-11-30||Cardiff 0 - Arsenal FC 3||EPL|
|20||Robin van Persie||Striker|
|12||John Obi Mikel||Midfielder|
Times In EDT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed