Arsenal take on London rivals, Chelsea, at the Emirates on Saturday in a game that is already the proverbial “six pointer” at the top of the table. After five games, Chelsea sit top of the Premier League on 13 points, unbeaten, with four wins and a draw to their name. Arsenal are also unbeaten but having only won two and drawn the other three, they are four points behind their opponents. Therefore, a win for the Gunners would reduce the gap to just one point whilst a win for Chelsea would extend their lead over a title rival to seven points and it is the home win that bookmakers are predicting to be the most likely outcome.
The Arsenal team is beginning to excite their fans by the week and with a number of their new signings starting to demonstrate why they were brought to the club, title aspirations are slowly creeping into thinking of fans. It is a view not exclusive to the Arsenal faithful with the team’s title odds cut from 16/1 at the start of the season to 9/1 and are the 5/4 favourites to pick up the three points on Saturday.
Olivier Giroud, who signed from Montpellier back in June to effectively replace Robin Van Persie opened his goal scoring account midweek in the 6-1 League Cup thrashing of Coventry City and the Frenchman must now prove he can score in the Premier League. Add Giroud to an attack that includes fellow new arrivals Santi Cazorla and Lucas Podolski, together with Theo Walcott, Mikel Arteta and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and it is evident that the Gunners are clearly a team to be reckoned with. Add to the team a solid defence, having only conceded twice in the league this season and the team look to be progressing in the right direction.
Chelsea boss, Roberto Di Matteo, therefore will be all too aware that a positive result for his side from the short trip to North London will be well-earned.
The Blues also come into the game after scoring six goals in midweek, demolishing Wolves in the League Cup 6-0. Di Matteo will be pleased that Fernando Torres got on to the score sheet in that game but knows it will be even more important for him to do so again on Saturday. He will have a strong cast of support to help him out; with the likelihood that Frank Lampard will be recalled into the midfield. Whether he goes with Oscar and Moses alongside him or not remains to be seen but there is every chance he will also recall Mikel to anchor the midfield and negate the attacking options of Arsenal.
Of the two sides however, it would seem that although currently sitting atop the table, it is Chelsea who look the most vulnerable. They were unconvincing against Stoke last week, managing only a late win courtesy of a rare Ashley Cole goal and it should not be forgotten that Juventus grabbed a draw off them the game before that in the Champions League, whilst struggling QPR held them to a draw in their last away game.
The prediction therefore for this game is a home win and the correct score forecast is 1-0 to the Arsenal…