Things got off to a very strong start for Chelsea, with a 3-0 away win at Huddersfield Town.
A very solid start indeed for Maurizio Sarri in West Yorkshire, especially considering his late arrival at Chelsea gave him little time to prepare his team and make the signings he wanted to improve his Chelsea side.
Goals from N’Golo Kante, Pedro and new-signing Jorginho from the spot secured a comfortable win.
A sterner test is about to come to Stamford Bridge. Unai Emery’s Arsenal will present a tougher task than Huddersfield, and the Blues will need to be on top of their game to take the three points. It is an Arsenal side without Arsene Wenger, so their playing style will likely be harder to predict.
Despite such a strong start, it is hard to envisage Maurizio Sarri not dropping these two players.
After his career has stuttered in recent times, it is good to see the young English midfielder getting first-team action at Chelsea. He looked a solid player in the Huddersfield game, but whether he has the star-quality needed to make it at Chelsea is still unknown. Starting him in the Arsenal game at Stamford Bridge would be something of a risk from Sarri.
However, when Chelsea have the likes of Ruben Loftus-Cheek on the bench, an enormous talent, desperate to prove himself at Stamford Bridge, the Arsenal fixture would be the perfect setting for the midfielder to show what he can do. He had an extremely impressive loan-spell at Crystal Palace last season and deserves a chance to show what he can do.
The fact Willian may be dropped is not a reflection of his performance against Huddersfield Town.
Simply put, when you have the talents of Belgian Eden Hazard, he has to start in a fixture as important as the Arsenal game. Two wins on the bounce to start the season would be an excellent return for Chelsea, and starting Hazard gives them the best chance of victory. The playmaker looked in excellent form at the World Cup, and Chelsea fans will be hoping he can continue his rich vein of form in the Premier League.