Arsenal vs. Chelsea and Pick to Win
Date:Sunday, September 17th, 2017
Where: English Premiere League Stamford Bridge, London, UK
by Keith, Professional Soccer/Football Handicapper, Predictem
Match Odds: Arsenal 7/2, Chelsea 3/4, Draw 14/5
Moneyline: Arsenal +350, Chelsea -125, Draw +280
Over/Under Best Market: UNDER 2.5 5/4 (+120)
With the English Premier League back in full swing, two bitter London rivals meet again at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea and Arsenal, one of the most potent rivalries in all of world soccer. The two met most recently in the Community Shield in August and the FA Cup Final before the summer recess. Arsenal would win both the Community Shield and the FA Cup in climactic fashion as they defeated their cross-city nemesis on both occasions. The Blues of Chelsea come in looking for vengeance and also to further garnish the fact they won the English Premier League title in the 2016-17 campaign. Both teams are looking to validate and fortify their respective titles on a grand stage against one another. Chelsea qualified for Champions League play by virtue of their Premiership crown. Arsenal would finish one point out of the top four, sending the Gunners to the Europa League instead. Both teams enter off of victories.
The Gunners come in off of a win against Bournemouth, where Arsenal would unleash their arsenal in route to a 3-0 win. With many transfer rumors surrounding the move of Alexis Sanchez out of Highbury, there were many distractions within the Gunners. However, Sanchez is staying at the Emirates and to the delight of many. Previous to their resurgence against AFC Bournemouth, the Gunners were outclassed by English Premier League sides as they would be outscored 5-0 in back-to-back losses against Stoke City and Liverpool. Liverpool would have a field day on the Gunners as they would hang four goals on Arsenal while failing to concede one. These early results dashed the morale of the supporters as many continued to call for manager Arsene Wengers head. Arsenal more than perhaps any other team have enormous pressure to make strides in 2017. The club has lived off its legacy alone in the previous few years as it failed to capitalize on weaker opposition to bring home another Premiership title. The Gunners have not won a English Premier League title in over a decade.
The Blues enter with a huge target on their back. But so far, Chelsea has done just fine. The Blues have now won three games in a row and sit in third place with nine points. Both Manchester City and Manchester United have gotten off to thunderous starts and the Blues have malingered in the rear as a result. Arsenal owns just six points and sits in 11th place, currently. The biggest eyesore perhaps for Arsenal supporters is that their team is currently stationed behind Newcastle United in the table. The Magpies were relegated and promoted in back-to-back seasons, Arsenal sits behind them. This revelation will likely serve as a fuel for the Gunners to get back in the hunt. A draw here puts Arsenal within three points of Chelsea and likely in the top half of the table. Lets not also forget that the Gunners will have confidence heading into this fixture, be that they have had Chelseas number as of late. In addition, the Gunners would have to class a draw at Stamford Bridge as a win. The Blues are a very tough team to beat at home and a draw in itself is a feat to achieve.
Given the prices here and the fact Arsenal does indeed have trouble winning on the road, the draw here offers the most equity. Mirroring historical tendencies of this rivalry as typically lower-scoring, we will go ahead and take a similar position in Over/Under Goal Markets. The UNDER 2.5 is an excellent choice given the fact the return is above evens coupled with the notion six of the last nine meetings between the two were settled by two goals or less. As a result, wagering two units here on both propositions nets a potential of four units if successful.
Arsenal Recent Form
W Bournemouth 3-0
L Liverpool 0-4
L Stoke City 0-1
W Leicester City 4-3
W Chelsea 1-1 (4-1 Penalties)
Chelsea Recent Form
W Leicester City 2-1
W Everton 2-0
W Tottenham Hotspur 2-1
L Burnley 2-3
L Arsenal 1-1 (1-4 Penalties)
Keith’s Prediction for the Game: DRAW 14/5 (+280) and UNDER 2.5 5/4 (+120)
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