Arsenal 0 Chelsea 1

Another game against Chelsea and another defender sent off for fouling that asshole Cost and another loss. Arsenal lost the game even before kickoff because even though Moaning Mourinho may have gone, the Gunners cannot get over their boogie team in Chelshit. Ten-man Arsenal missed the chance to go top of the Premier League as Diego Costa’s winner gave Chelsea victory at the Emirates Stadium. The Gunners never fully recovered from defender Per Mertesacker’s 18th-minute red card, awarded by referee Mark Clattenburg after he hauled down Costa as the striker raced clear. The revitalised Costa scored the decisive goal five minutes later, turning in Branislav Ivanovic’s cross at the near post to make it nine Premier League games without defeat for Chelsea against Arsenal.

Arsenal’s potency suffered after manager Arsene Wenger decided to replace striker Olivier Giroud and introduce defender Gabriel to compensate for Mertesacker’s dismissal. Victory would have put Arsenal back on top but Chelsea survived in relative comfort to leave the Gunners in third place with Leicester City now holding a three-point lead over Manchester City at the Premier League summit. This was the day Arsenal were meant to lay the ghost of Chelsea, who went into this game unbeaten in their last eight Premier League games against the Gunners. Even Wenger’s bogey man, Jose Mourinho, was out of the picture after his sacking. Wenger has lost five and drawn six of eleven league meetings with his old adversary. And yet it was the same old story for Arsenal as the frustration of their players and fans inside the Emirates reached boiling point long before the final whistle. There was no shortage of spirit and endeavour from Arsenal in the face of the numerical disadvantage inflicted on them after Mertesacker’s early red card.

If anything, it was inspiration and a little self-belief Arsenal lacked against a side that looked physically stronger in a game where Wenger’s side was missing a warrior who could get in and among the visitors in those exchanges. Their best effort of the match fell to Mathieu Flamini who attempted to convert Aaron Ramsey’s through-ball with a kung-fu kick, where a header might have been more appropriate. The result is hardly a terminal blow to Arsenal’s ambitions but a wound inflicted in familiar fashion. It now remains to be seen how much of an after-effect there is. Arsenal stays in 3rd place with 44 points after 23 games played.

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