Mourinho Leaves Wenger With Blue Goons
Arsenal travelled to Stamford Bridge on Sunday 05 October 2014 to take on league leaders Chelsea in an attempt to claw back three points and close the gap at the summit. However, the Blues proved too strong for their opponents and took the game 2-0 thanks to goals from Eden Hazard and Diego Costa.
Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger have never seen eye-to-eye, with the pair having been in verbal war since 2005 when the Chelsea boss called Wenger a “voyeur” and compared him to someone with a telescope who liked to watch other people. He then went on to say that the Arsenal manager is a “specialist in failure”, a tag the Frenchman will not be able to rubbish after this defeat, having never masterminded a victory over any Mourinho-led team..
The talking had been done off the pitch but it was up to the players to see who would be silenced. Both sides got out of the blocks and made good forward runs but neither team looked to press too much in fear of the counter attack.
After eight years of service to the club, Cesc Fabregas may have thought Arsenal fans would have been slightly forgiving of his move to Chelsea, however, it only took 10 minutes to erase those memories when the first profanities were chanted in his direction.
The first real sign that this was a derby came when Alexis Sanchez ran into ‘keeper Thibaut Courtois, knocking the Belgian out cold for a few seconds. Courtois was later substituted and then taken to hospital for scans after a team of paramedics had been called into the dressing room to treat the player.
Gary Cahill got his own back with a poor challenge on Sanchez only a few minutes later. This sparked outrage on the Arsenal bench with Wenger making his way over to the Chelsea dugout before pushing Mourinho.
Then the first real moment of brilliance came. Hazard made a magical run through the Arsenal defence, slipping through three players before he was brought down by a clumsy attempt from Laurent Koscielny in the box. The French international should have seen red for preventing a clear goal-scoring opportunity, however, inconsistent officiating again came to the fore and the defender was lucky to escape with only a yellow. Koscielny has now given away seven penalties in his time with the club, more than any other player in Premier League history.
Hazard stepped up himself and scored the resulting penalty to put his team ahead.
Unfortunately, there was more ‘typically Arsenal’ play in the second half with the Gunners employing their usual tactics of playing down the middle and trying to walk the ball over the goal line rather than testing Petr Cech from range or creating an pressure on the wings. The 15 minute delay before kickoff caused by Arsenal supporters letting off flares outside the stadium, was the only time throughout the afternoon that any sort of spark had been shown by someone in an away shirt.
Chelsea then hit on the counter when a beautifully weighted overhead from Fabregas was taken down by Diego Costa who delicately chipped the keeper to score his ninth goal of the season. The game ended 2-0 and presented Wenger with his seventeenth defeat in his last 21 games against teams in the top five. Arsenal sit in seventh place on the table with only one win in their last six fixtures and a tricky meeting with Steve Bruce’s Hull City next on the agenda.