Wenger Confident Against Chelsea
The recent history and the current situation would see Chelsea as main favorites for Sunday’s derby against Arsenal. The defending champions are leaders in Premier League from the very beginning and still looking good. Although the head-to-head is 59-40 to the Gunners, the Blues proved they can beat simply anyone in the league. The last season saw Chelsea with six wins, home and away, against Liverpool, United and Arsenal and remains the biggest danger in the Premier League. This is what Alex Ferguson himself would declare right after the new season began. Even so, French coach Arsene Wenger said these days that is quite confident with his side, who seems able to face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
It is only Didier Drogba that scored 12 goals in 10 matches against Wenger’s side. According to Chelsea striker, the Gunners showed interested in linking the African. However, the French manager will count on Sunday on team’s intelligence, technique and mobility. Arsenal is also the youngest big-four team. Few of the biggest absents are Cesc Fabregas, Thomas Vermaelen, keeper Almunia, who by the way didn’t have any bright days recently, along with winger Theo Walcott and midfielder Robin van Persie as all of these are injured. Thus, the French will likely chose for Squillaci and newly arrived Laurent Koscielny to tame wild Drogba on Sunday afternoon. “I feel we should not make an obsession of one player of Chelsea because they have a few players who can score goals against us. What is important is that we have the ball, that we dominate the game and that we are efficient defensively,” the 60-year-old manager said. Wenger revealed Kieron Gibbs absence, too. This is sidelined for three weeks due to injury. “We lost Gibbs as well on Tuesday night with a calf problem and he is out of the England squad as well. He is out for two to three weeks,” Arsenal coach added.
Drogba reveals Gunners interest
Chelsea striker, who arrived in the west part of London six years ago to join Stamford Bridge side, declared these days that he has been hunted by Arsenal time ago. The 32-year-old left the French League at that time to come and play in Premiership. Well, there is no doubt he, too got linked by the Gunners who use to buy plenty of French players or Ligue 1 ones. “I don’t know if Arsene Wenger regrets it – you will have to ask him. But remember he did have Thierry Henry. Arsenal was a team with a lot of French players and players from the French League,” Drogba said of Arsenal policy. Indeed, Wenger brought also Sylvian Wiltord, Patrick Viera and Robert Pires. There was also a joke among the French players who would consider Arsenal as 21st Ligue 1 team. Surely, French is the main language spoken on Emirates Stadium.
On the other hand, this was the same manner Chelsea worked, too. They also had plenty of French players in the recent years, including here Didier Deschamps, who just visited Stamford Bridge in Thursday’s game Marseille played in UCL, Marcel Desailly, Emmanuel Petit and so on. Fate put Drogba though in west London. “But for some reason it didn’t happen and I didn’t sign for Arsenal, I don’t think it was my destiny. I honestly believe if things don’t happen, it is for a reason,” the Ivorian added. Drogba is one of the biggest top scorers Premier League produced lately. He was also last year’s top scorer in Premiership and promises to repeat the same performance this season. “I am looking forward to it and will try my best to keep that record going but I know it won’t be easy. I’ve had some games when I’ve really struggled against Arsenal – but I hope this won’t be one of them. We need to win. All I care about is winning – it’s so important we do that after losing at City. We knew that one day we would lose. We will lose other games during this season but as long as we finish top of the league then it doesn’t matter,” the best African player said. He already scored five goals in the first five games Chelsea played. But the table is led by both Untied’s Berbatov and Drogba’s French teammate Florent Malouda. They score six goals each.
Apart from this, if Wenger mobilized very well the defensive in order to tame Drogba, Chelsea captain John Terry is ready to apply the same treatment to Arsenal’s strikers, whoever they will be. For no doubt Wenger will use Maroune Chamakh on Sunday, and older ‘relative’ for Chelsea. Thus Terry will work hard once again in front of the Moroccan who faced the Londoners one season ago in Champions League, when he was playing for Bordeaux. “He was really impressive when we played against him and a few of our French guys before those games a couple of years ago mentioned how good he was. I am not surprised to be seeing him playing for a top side now, but going forward Arsenal have always provide a threat. Defensively, hopefully we can get at them and score goals. They have been leaking a few of late,” Chelsea defender said of Chamakh.
Terry will likely play also an ‘offensive’ role on Sunday’s derby, the way he did against Marseille midweek. He scored after a very long period of just keeping the sheet clean for Chelsea. His specialty? Corners. “It was good to get back on the scoresheet. I’ve not scored at the Shed End of the stadium for a long time,” he would comment upon Tuesday’s goal from the same Stamford Bridge. “I scored my first league goal back at the old Highbury but since they have moved stadiums I’ve not scored against them there or at the Bridge,” Terry, who socred thre times against Arsenal, added. It would be nice to get underway against them again, and it is a massive game coming after the Man City defeat. It is important we get three points regardless of how we play,” this ended.
Chelsea lead the Premiership table with 15 points in six games, unlike Arsenal’s 11. The defending champions are followed by Manchester United who remain second at least until tomorrow as Ferguson’s side finished 0-0 on Stadium of Light against Sunderland on Saturday.11