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Live Commentary: Arsenal Vs Chelsea 2 – 2

 ARSENAL 2 CHELSEA 2

 

Arsenal just keep serving up these thrillers in these big games at the moment and, while they aren’t getting as many points from them as they might like, it is certainly good for the neutral!

This one was a thrilling, end-to-end contest from the first whistle until the last, with Hector Bellerin eventually rescuing a point in stoppage time after Marcos Alonso had seemingly wrapped up the win for chelsea. Incredible match.

90+4 minFULL TIME: Arsenal 2-2 Chelsea
90+3 minOFF THE BAR! My word, this is incredible! Seconds after losing their lead, Chelsea should really be back in front! A ball over the top releases Morata, but the Spaniard’s finish is once again really weak – the third one on one he has missed tonight. The ball drops at the feet of Zappacosta and he smashes a first time effort towards goal, but it crashes off the bar. Incredible!
90+2 minThis match just keeps on giving! More late drama here as Bellerin surely earns his side a point with a brilliant finish, steering the ball into the far corner on the half-volley after it had dropped to him.

 

90+2 minGOAL! Arsenal 2-2 Chelsea (Hector Bellerin)

 

90+1 minThere will be four minutes of added time at the end of this match.
89 minYELLOW CARD! Courtois picks up a late yellow card for time-wasting.
89 minBrilliant defending from Cahill as he throws himself in the way of a magnificent volley from Mustafi on the edge of the box.
88 minARSENAL SUB: Final throw of the dice for Arsenal as Theo Walcott replaces Chambers.
86 minIt is all-out attack for Arsenal now as they look to rescue something from this game. It is very similar to the loss to Manchester United earlier in the season, where they played really well but saw an inspired goalkeeping performance thwart them.

84 minMarcos Alonso is such a goal threat, and he may well have won this game for Chelsea here!

Willian sends a fine cross-field ball out to Zappacosta, who turns past a tiring Maitland-Niles before drilling a low cross into the box. It is not Morata or Willian in there, but Alonso getting in front of his man at the near post to steer a really good finish past Cech.

84 minGOAL! Arsenal 1-2 Chelsea (Marcos Alonso)

82 minCHELSEA SUB: Interesting final change for Chelsea here as Hazard goes off to be replaced by Willian.

 

80 minARSENAL SUB: Change for Arsenal here as Danny Welbeck replaces Lacazette.

79 minNot a stat that Wenger will be happy to hear, particular considering the nature of the last two…

 

4 – Arsenal have conceded a joint-high 4 penalty goals in the Premier League this season (level with Watford and West Ham). Spotted.

77 minThere have been some brilliant individual performances so far tonight on both sides. Hazard has been close to his sparkling best, while the likes of Ozil and Maitland-Niles have stood out for Arsenal. Not to mention both goalkeepers, of course, who have probably been the two best players on the park.
75 minYELLOW CARD! Mesut Ozil picked up a yellow card in the protests after that penalty.
75 minYELLOW CARD! Mesut Ozil picked up a yellow card in the protests after that penalty.
73 minCLOSE! Chelsea come close again here as Bakayoko tees up Kante, whose striker is half-blocked and spins just wide of the post.
71 minCHELSEA SUB: Another change for the visitors as Danny Drinkwater replaces Fabregas, who gets a good reception at his former ground.
70 minCHANCE! Another big chance for Morata to open his tally for the evening! Fabregas slides the ball through for the striker, who shows good strength to beat Chambers to the ball and shrug him off. The defender just about does enough, though, with Morata clipping his finish off target.

67 minArsene Wenger wasn’t happy with the penalty his side conceded against West Brom, and he isn’t happy again here. In fairness to the Arsenal boss, he has a point here.

Hazard sees an initial cross blocked, but as Bellerin swings at the loose ball Hazard just beats him to it. The Belgian goes down theatrically despite there not being a huge amount of contact, but Anthony Taylor points to the spot.

Hazard steps up himself and fires his spot kick straight down the middle.

67 minGOAL! Arsenal 1-1 Chelsea (Eden Hazard, penalty)
66 minPENALTY TO CHELSEA!

GOOOOALL Hazard for Chelsea.

65 minCHANCE! Arsenal pour forward again here as Sanchez is released down the right channel before finding Lacazette, but the Frenchman’s strike from a difficult angle is tipped wide by Courtois.

63 minfinally Arsenal have the breakthrough! It has been coming, but it was always going to take something pretty thunderous to beat Courtois this evening.

Holding’s pass takes a nick off Morata on the way through which only takes it into the path of Wilshere, who lashes an unstoppable effort past Courtois at his near post.

63 minGOAL! Arsenal 1-0 Chelsea (Jack Wilshere)
62 minCHANCE! More lovely football from Arsenal as Ozil and Lacazette exchanges passes down the left channel, but the German’s final ball across to Sanchez is cut out! Ozil could have gone for goal himself, but he was unselfish.
60 minOzil has been superb tonight – Arsenal really will miss him if and when he goes. He slides a pass in to Bellerin this time, but a Chelsea defender just gets a toe to it.

 

60 minOzil has been superb tonight – Arsenal really will miss him if and when he goes. He slides a pass in to Bellerin this time, but a Chelsea defender just gets a toe to it.

 

58 minAlonso hoists a testing cross into the middle which dips into a dangerous area, but once again Cech does well to claw it away.

58 minHere is that double save from Cech early in this second half…

 

DOUBLE SAVE! Cech denies Hazard with his feet before getting up to push away Alonso’s header!

Watch live on Sky Sports Premier League or follow in-game clips and highlights here: http://skysports.tv/mNYIKy 

56 minCHELSEA SUB: Chelsea make their first change of the evening as Moses is replaced by Davide Zappacosta.
55 minAnother controversial moment in this action-packed match! Wilshere goes down rather theatrically just outside the area and wants a free kick, but the referee lets play continue rather than awarding either a free kick or showing Wilshere a second yellow for diving.
52 minCHANCE! Another huge chance for Arsenal, but once again it is Courtois to the rescue! It is lovely football, mixed in with a bit of luck as the ball bounces to Lacazette off Cahill, but the striker is thwarted from point-blank range.
51 minat the other end Maitland-Niles beats Moses all ends up before delivering a cross to the back post, but it is just a couple of inches too high for Sanchez.
50 minCHANCE! The resulting corner is played short and then into the feet of Bakayoko, but he curls his effort well over.
50 minCHANCES! This is turning into a goalkeeping masterclass between these two former teammates! This time it is Cech in the spotlight as Fabregas slide the ball through for Hazard, whose low drive is well saved by the feet of the Arsenal keeper. Chelsea come right back at the hosts, though, and Alonso steers a header towards the bottom corner which Cech does well to turn around the post.

 

48 minHolding is very fortunate to avoid a yellow card here as he trips Morata after being turned by the Spaniard. It was cynical, but surprisingly Anthony Taylor lets it go without further punishment.

 

 

46 minKICKOFF: Chelsea get us back underway for this second half.

 

5+1 minHALF TIME: Arsenal 0-0 Chelsea
45+1 minJust the one minute of added time at the end of this first half.
45 minCHANCE! Chance for Fabregas to give Chelsea the lead just before half time. It is brilliant for Hazard as he ducks inside from the left before exquisitely laying the ball off for Fabregas, but he fires it off target from the edge of the area.

43 minYELLOW CARD! Wilshere picked up a yellow for a challenge on Fabregas earlier, and he has returned the favour now. This one is a harsh one, though, as he got the ball.

 

41 minIt is Arsenal ending this half on top at the moment. Again Ozil is left in space and is allowed to turn on the ball, but his attempted through-pass to Sanchez is just about cut out.

 

39 minSAVE! Brilliant stop from Courtois again as he denies Ozil! The German drilled an effort towards the bottom corner from 25 yards and it looked destined to end up in the back of the net, but Courtois’s fingertips turned it around the post.

 

38 minSHOT! Alonso does indeed go for goal, but he curls it over the wall and over the crossbar too. Perhaps that was too close is anything.

 

37 minBig chance for Chelsea here as Xhaka bundles into Bakayoko from behind right on the edge of the box. Alonso is standing over it…

 

35 minThe balance between Arsenal defence and attack could be the difference tonight. They have looked shaky at the back – Chambers in particular – but going forward Ozil and Sanchez are causing real problems. This one is very finely poised.
33 minJust over 10 minutes remaining until half time in this one now, and somehow it is still goalless. Both teams have squandered great chances to break the deadlock, and it is a lot more open than many might have expected.
31 minYELLOW CARD! Wilshere can have no complaints about being the first name in the book here having gone into a crunching and late challenge on Fabregas.
29 minChambers gifts possession back to Chelsea inside his own half and immediately the Blues get the ball to Hazard. The Belgian cuts back onto his right foot and goes for goal, but there are no shortage of Arsenal players throwing themselves in the say of it. Chambers has not had the best of games so far tonight.

 

 

27 minCHANCE! Just as I say that Chelsea have another clear chance as the ball is played into Bakayoko, who hammers a powerful effort towards goal. It is high and close to Cech, though, which allows him to stick a strong hand up and make a good save.
27 minArsene Wenger will be pleased with the opening half an hour or so to this match, despite their missed chances. Chelsea have squandered a golden opportunity of their own, but Arsenal could and should be ahead here.
25 minChelsea win a corner which Bakayoko wins in the air, but he can never get over the ball and nods it well over the crossbar.

23 min CHANCE! Courtois is keeping his side in this game now! The ball is fed into the feet of Lacazette, who turns sharply inside the box and quickly gets a shot away which Courtois gets down really well to save.

 

21 minThe replay of the penalty claim has just been shown, and it looks as though Maitland-Niles tripped over his own leg. There may have been the slightest touch off Moses, but the Chelsea player did nothing to do that. It is a good decision from the referee as in real time it looked like it could have been a spot kick.
19 minThose are two huge chances in quick succession at both ends of the field – we have a game on our hands people!

 

17 minOFF THE POST! Oh my word, how has this not gone in?! Arsenal have a penalty shout for a trip on Maitland-Niles turned down, but they are immediately back onto it. Some neat interchange in the box sees Sanchez exchange passes with a teammate in the box before getting his shot away, but Courtois gets the slightest touch to the ball to divert it onto the inside of the post. The ball then trickles across the line before hitting the other post, and a grateful Courtois drops on it before it can be tapped in. It doesn’t get much closer!
15 minCHANCE! Almost a chance for Chelsea again as Moses plays a low ball into the box which somehow makes it all the way through to Cech. Morata had the chance to poke it past the keeper from close range, but he was just short of connecting with it.
14 minCHANCE! Oh what a chance this is, but Morata makes a huge mess of it! A long ball over the defence sees Chambers leave it for his own keeper, but Cech is never coming for it so it is poor defending. Morata races through on goal and only has the keeper to beat, but his finish is dreadful as he scuffs one well wide.
13 minThis game is beginning to open up a little now! After a fairly tentative start there have been a few encouraging attacks at both ends in recent minutes.
10 minAlmost a chance for Arsenal as Ozil works the ball out to Sanchez before darting into the box, but the Chilean’s delivery is too far beyond his teammate.
9 minIt looks as though Arsenal are playing something similar to Chelsea’s 3-5-2 system in these opening exchanges, matching the visitors’ shape with Sanchez up front and Ozil a little deeper.
7 minSHOT! Just like against West Brom, Sanchez’s free kick takes a deflection off the wall, but this time it loops wide of the target. Courtois was left stranded by that one!
6 minGood early chance for Arsenal to test Courtois here as Kante clatters into Lacazette in a dangerous position. Free kick to the hosts, with Sanchez over it…
4 minArsenal get their foot on the ball for the first time tonight, which should help them to just settle into the game. This is a huge match for them tonight.

2 min.  Quick start from Chelsea to this game as they win a free kick and take it while Arsenal are sleeping. The Gunners escape without suffering any serious damage, but they have made a slow start to this one.

 

1 min KICKOFF: Here we go, then! Arsenal get us underway at the Emirates!

Keep up to date with all the action from the Emirates as Arsenal host champions Chelsea as olikareporters sports crew brings you live commentary from the Emirates Stadium from 20: 45GMT

 

The festive feast of Premier League football is nearing its conclusion, but no doubt you’ve left some space to tuck into this mouth-watering clash at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing draw at West Brom on New Year’s Eve when playing host to Antonio Conte’s side, who ended 2017 in style with a 5-0 win over Stoke. And though their title defence looks set to fall short, victory over their London rivals tonight will see them become Man City’s closest challengers.

Always an eagerly-anticipated clash this one, and it’s live on www.olikareporters.com sports.

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