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Please use this thread for all posts relating to our Premier League match against Arsenal at Stamford Bridge, before, during and after the game.

The Moderators will be keeping an eye on things, so let's try to keep it intelligent.

Please note that this un-moderated forum is a privilege and its abuse will result in the suspension of your account.

The match is scheduled to kick off at 17:30, Saturday, 18th August, 2018 (Local UK time/date).

 

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paulw66   

Have no idea what to expect. Arsenal were pretty poor at the weekend, but they were playing City

Expect Kovacic to make the bench, if not start. 

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This is a strange one IMO in that it really is a big, important game for us despite it being so early in the season; if we are going to make the top 4, there is a cohort of fixtures we need to take maximum points from and that it includes home games against the sides you'd expect to be in the places immediately above and below us.

I think Arsenal are very poor, and could see them slipping further down the PL pecking order this year, but they have the jump on us in terms of the fitness of their first XI.

If Hazard is capable of starting, he must.

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I think Hazard will start this one, I see no reason for him not to.

I think we'll see:

 

Kepa

Azpilicueta Rudiger Luiz Alonso

Kante Jorginho Barkley

Pedro Morata Hazard

Bench: Caballero, Christensen, Emerson, RLC, Kovacic, Willian, Giroud

 

It won't be an easy match, but I think we should have enough to get the win. Would love another clean sheet too.

I'll be on a campsite in France for this one, so currently crossing my fingers the wifi is good enough or the bar is showing the game.

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15 minutes ago, My Blood Is Blue said:

I think Hazard will start this one, I see no reason for him not to.

I think we'll see:

 

Kepa

Azpilicueta Rudiger Luiz Alonso

Kante Jorginho Barkley

Pedro Morata Hazard

Bench: Caballero, Christensen, Emerson, RLC, Kovacic, Willian, Giroud

I'd have exactly that team but with another attacking option instead of Emerson - Hudson-Odoi if fit, Moses if he isn't. With Moses being able to cover both full back positions and the wingers I think he'll end up on the bench more often than not this season. 

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Based on Willian's electric performance last weekend, I'd be very surprised if he doesn't start ahead of Pedro.

26 minutes ago, chiswickblue said:

I'd have exactly that team but with another attacking option instead of Emerson - Hudson-Odoi if fit, Moses if he isn't. With Moses being able to cover both full back positions and the wingers I think he'll end up on the bench more often than not this season. 

I'm not sure that with benches of 7, utility players  add much nowadays.  And with Rudiger IMO being able to play RB and Azpi anywhere in back 4, we only need one of Zappa, Cahill or Christensen to have the back 4 covered.
IMO Moses is substandard wherever he plays.  Sarri might well reach the same conclusion sooner or later.  But in the meantime I reckon he'll keep Moses as a AM, in particular an AM closer when we are leading.  He has no cutting edge, but does have work rate.  Of the alternative sub AMs, RLC & Barkley don't have work rate, and 17 year olds aren't expected to have it.

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paulw66   
6 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

Based on Willian's electric performance last weekend, I'd be very surprised if he doesn't start ahead of Pedro.

I'm not sure that with benches of 7, utility players  add much nowadays.  And with Rudiger IMO being able to play RB and Azpi anywhere in back 4, we only need one of Zappa, Cahill or Christensen to have the back 4 covered.
IMO Moses is substandard wherever he plays.  Sarri might well reach the same conclusion sooner or later.  But in the meantime I reckon he'll keep Moses as a AM, in particular an AM closer when we are leading.  He has no cutting edge, but does have work rate.  Of the alternative sub AMs, RLC & Barkley don't have work rate, and 17 year olds aren't expected to have it.

Agree with defender subs point of view. Assuming Rudiger and Azpi both start, and will start most important games, then we have most defensive positions covered.

Back 4 of Azpi, Alonso, Rudiger, Luiz, and you just need AC on the bench. If Azpi gets injured, Rudiger plays RB and if Alonso gets injured, Azpi goes left back. If a CB gets injured, AC plays there. 

The leaves a GK and 5 more outfield players as subs. Probably 2 from RLC, Barkley and Kovacic depending on which one is starting with Jorginho and Kante, then Pedro / Willian, then Giroud/Morata then one other.......CHO / Abraham  perhaps. 

Don't see the need for another defender to sit on the bench when defensive subs are so rare. 

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21 minutes ago, paulw66 said:

Don't see the need for another defender to sit on the bench when defensive subs are so rare. 

Mind you I can see Sarri's FBs getting much more tired out getting up and down the wings than they did as Conte's WBs.

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Holymoly   

If we only had a striker like Drogba available this fixture should be a stroll in the park. As it is we are probably looking to maximise the goal threat from AM. While we expect last week's type of performance against the league's probable strugglers this is the type of game we have to play and win convincingly if we are to get back into top 4 contention.

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asvaberg   

Go for Giroud up front and have him score a hat-trick :)

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