Eight goals. Van Persie hat-trick. Terry’s horror show. Controversy. We just knew that was going to happen, didn’t we? This London derby was a mixture of the brillliant and the bizzare.
It was a truly pulsating and breathtaking game which showed character, pace, determination, attacking flair. But it was the atrocious defending on both parts that stole the show. A month ago this game would have had collapse written all over Arsenal but not today, they showed a never say die attitude and saw a confidence that has been brimming in recent weeks. Will this be the defining moment in Arsenal’s chapter, that sees world class striker Robin Van Persie sign a new contract?
It was a stunning victory for Arsenal even though Chelsea’s defending led to their own downfall; but take nothing from Arsenal, they ran out deserved winners. Van Persie is pure world class, I spoke of him this week and boy this guy is an expectional talent and so lethal in front of goal. How much he means to the Arsenal team and fans cannot be understated. Chelsea’s £50 million Fernando Torres on the other hand was a shadow compared to Van Persie, will he ever have the same presence and influence on Chelsea as he did for Liverpool?
Arsenal’s resurgent run sees their season get better and better and puts a huge statement across the Premiership, while Terry’s latest slip sees Chelsea’s season take a turn for the worst. It was a comedy show of errors at the back which will be seen as suicide football by both their prospective managers and will get the likes of Alan Hansen and Lee Dixon crying with shame and disgust.
Terry: The England captain has just seen his week gone from bad to worse. He must be thinking what have I done to deserve such misery? I think most of us can come up with an answer. He would have thought after scoring his goal just before the break, he has made amends, but to concede 5 goals and slip at a decisive moment in the game which significantly hand gifted Robin Van Persie the goal, is just not acceptable for a player of his statue.
Ashley Cole: Made countless runs down the left flank and caused havoc amongst the Arsenal defence on many occasions. Should have been gifted a better reward after being hacked by Arsenal goalkeeper Szczesny. Defensively made brilliant tackles and interceptions at times, but found it difficult to cope with Walcott’s pace and timing.
Lampard: After taking a lot of stick by the press earlier on in the season, today just showed why he is so vital to the Chelsea team. He scored the first goal with a cool finish and set up the second. He was right in the hub of the action and made an exquisite pass to set Sturridge through on goal.
Mata: The Spanish genius has been a revelation since his move from Valencia. He played with freedom and panache and split the defence wide open with his vision. He played a great cross for the opener and scored a sublime long range effort for the third.
Sturridge: Worked exceedingly hard, but not enough class in the final third. Should have done better to set up Torres, and definitely should have scored when Lampard set him through. Other than that, gave Arsenal left back Santos a torrid time down the right flank with his pace and movement.
Torres: Coming into this game he looked to be a player full of confidence, but today he just couldn’t get involved in the mix of it. He never looked like scoring. Didn’t work the goalkeeper enough, but on the plus he did work hard with his pace and movement.