The Ox gives Mourinho the Blues

The drought is over. It may have taken him 14 games, series of mind games and many failures.  Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain goal was all that was required to give Arsene Wenger his first-ever victory over Jose Mourinho.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 02:  Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain of Arsenal celebrates scoring his side's first goal during the FA Community Shield match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Wembley Stadium on August 2, 2015 in London, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan - The FA/The FA via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 02: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain of Arsenal celebrates scoring his side’s first goal during the FA Community Shield match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Wembley Stadium on August 2, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Michael Regan – The FA/The FA via Getty Images)

Before the game, the statistics gave the impression that this was going to be a very uncomfortable afternoon for Arsenal. However, this Arsenal side were not ready to play according to the scripts. Their recent visits to the new Wembley stadium have been generally successful and Chamberlain’s winner means Arsenal are unbeaten in their last six visits to the English national stadium.

IMG_0203
Arsenal celebrates after beating Chelsea
IMG_0204
Dejected and Beaten: John Terry walks away after a disappointing defeat

The Gunners were solid and defensively efficient throughout, qualities usually associated with Chelsea and very alien to the Arsenal of old whose fragility and frequent loss of concentration in key moments against the bigger sides had been a constant source of frustration and disappointment to their fans. Chelsea were without star striker Diego Costa, who had an injury scare, an absence the Portugese coach attributed to a discomfort in his hamstring. In Costa’s absence, Loic Remy got the nod to lead the lines, while fringe player Ramires was also given a start partnering Matic in central midfield with Fabregas playing further forward in midfield. New signings Asmir Begovic and Radamel Falcao had to make do with a place on the bench. Jack Wilshere joined Welbeck on the sidelines with injuries for Arsenal.

Chelsea took time to get going while Chamberlain and Walcott’s pace were causing problem to the Chelsea backline. Midway through the first half, Mesut Ozil smartly found Walcott unmarked in the middle who fed the increasingly dangerous Chamberlain on the inside right of the box. Cesar failed to close him down quick enough and a swift shift followed by a curling shot from Chamberlain put Arsenal 1-0 up. That was the first goal Arsenal had scored against a Chelsea team managed by José Mourinho since 2007. Ramires then missed a golden chance to draw level in the first half following some hesitation from the Arsenal defence as he missed a point-blank header from six yards. The Gunners went in at half time with a lead to protect.

Petr Cech saved an excellent Oscar free-kick to draw roars from Arsenal supporters. Clear cut chances were few and far between until the closing stages of the game when Cazorla and Gibbs missed good chances to seal a more comfortable win. The hostility between the two managers continued at the end of the game as Mourinho made a point of shaking hands with every Arsenal player but ignored Wenger.

The Portugese was also far from impressed with the opposition style of play and stated that the best team lost the game while the defensive side had won. He further claimed that the Gunners had left their philosophy in the dressing room. Wenger quickly defended his team by stating: “Our game is based on solidarity, defending and attacking well. We wanted to protect our lead when we were 1-0 up.” He was also quick to praise his new goalkeeper Petr Cech and said: “He had an impact because maybe the Chelsea players thought they needed to score a perfect goal to beat him.”

Arsenal will be motivated by this victory as they seek to launch a serious bid for the title this season. They begin the season at home against West Ham United. Meanwhile, the Blues kick off their title defence by entertaining Swansea City, hoping to bounce back from rare disappointment against their London rival.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s