Arsenal and Chelsea played out a 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
A frenetic encounter saw both sides create chances without converting while David Luiz was sent off in the closing stages.
Arsenal haven’t won at the Bridge in the league since October 2011 but will be pleased to come away with a point.
Here’s a look at three things we learned from the encounter.
Mesut Ozil is a quality footballer, there’s no question about that. Technically and creatively, he’s among the best in the world. However, he’s also a luxury player who struggles to make an impact against top opposition, and he wasn’t missed against Chelsea.
Every player for Arsenal put in a good shift as they went toe-to-toe with the Premier League champions, competing for every ball. Ozil was ruled out with a knee injury, but it may actually have been a blessing in disguise for the Gunners.
They weren’t overrun in midfield like they normally are against Chelsea. Given the frenetic nature of the game, energy and drive were crucial to both sides and Ozil’s languid fashion could quite easily have hampered the visitors.
The pace and physicality of the Premier League often takes some getting used to for foreign players. Alvaro Morata and Alexandre Lacazette have found that out too. Despite bagging a few goals between them already, neither have looked in their element.
Both strikers have also struggled to come to terms with a 3-4-3 system. Despite Morata working in a three-man defence system previously at Juventus, he did so in a 3-5-2 where he had a strike partner for company upfront.
The Spaniard was relentless with his forward runs and put a header wide before the offside flag was raised but continues to struggle as the lone striker in the system. The former Real Madrid striker is showing good signs, but will take time to fully adjust at Stamford Bridge.
Meanwhile, Lacazette was anonymous, with his most notable moment being his failure to turn in a rebound after Aaron Ramsey hit the upright.
The Frenchman had fewer touches (23) than any other Arsenal player who started the game.
Talk about great substitutes to bring on. Neither Eden Hazard or Alexis Sanchez started the game but their introductions did give their respective sides a sense of purpose in attack.
The closing 15 minutes was a breathless end-to-end encounter with shots aplenty and tackles flying in. It’s no coincidence that the two dynamic attackers made their entrances around the same time.
Both players showed glimpses of brilliance and provided an edge to the attacks on both sides. It was a timely reminder of their supreme quality and worth to their respective teams.
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