While football may be a team game, certain individual battles on the pitch will go some way to determining who wins this game at Stamford Bridge.
Here are 4 key battles that could go a long way to deciding the result of this game:
Shkodran Mustafi v Diego Costa
We don’t like him, he doesn’t like us, but in Mustafi, Costa will find a player less easily rattled than Gabriel and a lot more mobile than Mertesacker. In the game at the Emirates, alongside Laurent Koscielny, Costa was restricted to 2 off-target shots and just 3 aerials won. Then again, Costa only averages a 19% aerial duel win-rate in the league, perhaps that had nothing to do with our defenders.
Mesut Ozil v N’Golo Kante
Arsene Wenger tried to sign Kante twice for a reason – he’s really, really good. For Arsenal, much will depend on Mesut’s ability to get out from under Kante and work his magic. He shone against Chelsea at the Emirates and there’s no reason he can’t do the same here if his forwards give him options.
Hector Bellerin v Eden Hazard
We all know how deadly Hazard can be and Hector is going to need to shake whatever afflicted him against Watford to deal with the Belgian.
Alexis Sanchez v ?
It’s actually hard to pick a personal battle for Alexis because we don’t know where he’ll play. That in itself offers problems to the Chelsea defence. Sadly, Ivanovic is gone which makes things a little more interesting.