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Arsenal vs. Chelsea: Preview, streaming info

Arsenal make the short trip south of the Thames to take on Chelsea.

He makes the best faces
He makes the best faces
Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

I am a firm believer that referencing past games to predict or discuss future games is a bit...misleading. I'm not one to say "Arsenal have played Chelsea X times in the last Y years and only won (this many), so they'll definitely (whatever result the historical record seems to favor) today".  After all, each game is unique; even if the game features the same players as the last game between the teams, the venue is different, the conditions are different, etc. So on Saturday, the fact that Arsenal haven't won against Chelsea in the league since 2011 means nothing; the fact that Arsenal won the Community Shield means nothing. Don't let anyone convince you otherwise.

And I will also most definitely not read anything into either Arsenal's loss on Wednesday or Chelsea's win on Tuesday; Arsenal played a significantly different lineup than they usually play in the league, and Chelsea played Maccabi Tel Aviv.

So, without that, what are we left with, then? We're left with an Arsenal team who, against Stoke, finally looked like they were waking up; it wasn't the 100% comprehensive performance we were looking for, but it was leaps and bounds better than the last couple of games. And we're left with a Chelsea team in 17th place, who are going to be desperately wanting to not further lose sight of the league leaders this early in the season, playing at home.

Arsenal should field their more "normal" lineup, with the headline of course being Petr Cech's return to Stamford Bridge, while Per Mertesacker may still be out as he recovers from a nasty viral infection. Chelsea will be without Willian, while Pedro and Radamel Falcao are to take late fitness tests and may or may not play a part. Thibault Courtois, of course, is out for months, leaving Asmir Begovic in goal for Chelsea.

I am nervous about this game, but I also believe it's very winnable for Arsenal; as I've written too many times before, though, it will depend on if Recent Premier League Arsenal show up, or if Zagreb/Monaco Arsenal show up. I know which one I want.

Arsenal vs. Chelsea
English Premier League
Stamford Bridge, Chelsea
Saturday, September 19th, 2015
Kickoff: 4:45 am PDT / 7:45 am EDT / 12:45 pm BT
How (to watch):
US Broadcast:  NBC Sports Live Extra | Worldwide