Ahead of this weekend’s FA Cup Final, we take a look at how Arsenal have fared against their London rivals.
Chelsea are this season’s Premier League champions and deservedly so, having been a model of consistency since Antonio Conte’s formation change in September.
It just had to be a 3-0 defeat away at Arsenal that prompted the Italian to tinker with his tactics at half-time in a game that they were being comprehensively beaten – the first time since April of 1997 that the Blues conceded three and didn’t score one of their own against the Gunners.
Arsenal’s wobble typically began before Christmas after successive defeats and any hope of a title challenge was emphatically ended during Chelsea’s 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge in early February. Goals from Marcos Alonso, Eden Hazard and former Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas sealed all three points as the Blues had their sweet revenge.
The head-to-head table between the two sides is as follows:
Arsenal have won 73 previous meetings, to Chelsea’s 62. The Gunners have won eight FA Cup ties whilst the newly-crowned champions have sealed five victories in this competition.
The winner of their most recent meeting in England’s oldest competition? Chelsea, during a 2-1 semi-final win back in 2009.
Given their impressive record in recent seasons against Arsene Wenger’s various sides, Chelsea will be the favourites to prevail – especially with Conte having had the luxury of resting key players during wins over Watford and Sunderland.
Ray Parlour’s fantastic strike from range silenced Chelsea’s hopes of winning the last FA Cup final between these two during in a memorable 2-1 Arsenal win, back in 2002.
However, that was 15 years ago.
Chelsea’s dominance in this fixture has been evident ever since Roman Abramovich’s arrival the following summer as they were keen to establish themselves as a European heavyweight with spending power and world-class quality.