Charlie Nicholas has claimed he has “waited years” for Arsenal’s performance against Chelsea.

The Sky pundit was impressed with Arsenal’s defending in the 0-0 draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. It was a performance that few expected, and the sheer novelty of it was what pleased Nicholas the most.

“I’ve waited years to see that, I’ve waited years,” Nicholas said on Sky Sports via the Express. “I’m very critical as you know about my team when it doesn’t go right. 

“But I thought they were absolutely fantastic in terms of discipline, their work-rate was very encouraging, pressed and pushed at the right time.”

However, the Scot went on to acknowledge that celebrating a draw is the new reality for Arsenal. “Yes, that (celebrating a 0-0 draw) is reality for me. It is reality for me, I accept that,” he added.

“Every time in the last few years we’ve spoken about the spirit and togetherness, it dissolves very quickly at Arsenal. But it was strong last week, it was a real togetherness.”

Arsenal have suffered so many bad defeats away to their rivals that a gritty 0-0 draw became an accomplishment. Still, to be genuinely pleased with the result and not have to endure weeks of criticism makes for a refreshing change of pace.

I feel Arsenal do need to win those types of games more frequently, or at least ensure they don’t totally humiliate themselves whenever they travel to the big grounds. Having got that draw at Chelsea, they need now need to repeat the same performance when they travel to the Etihad to play Manchester City in November.

Before then, Arsenal have a reasonable run of fixtures where they can realistically put together a winning run and climb the Premier League table. Arsenal play West Brom and Brighton this week, before travelling to Watford after the October international break.