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David Luiz imperious before dismissal as Chelsea rue missed chances

David Luiz imperious before dismissal as Chelsea rue missed chances
From ESPN - September 17, 2017

Chelsea's winning run came to end after a 0-0 draw with Arsenal at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues flew out of the blocks and penned the visitors in their own half for the opening quarter of an hour but were unable to convert pressure into goals. Pedro was the biggest culprit, shooting tamely at Petr Cech when played through on goal.

Arsenal grew in confidence almost went ahead when Aaron Ramsey hit the post before Alexandre Lacazette fired the rebound over with the goal gaping.

The second half followed a similar pattern with Chelsea failing to make the most of their early territorial dominance. Arsenal then had a goal ruled out for offside and suddenly the game was end to end as both teams searched for a winner.

A fraught finale saw David Luiz shown a straight red card after a reckless rather than malicious challenge but Arsenal could not make the most of their numerical advantage.

Positives

Both halves began with excellent energy, slick passing combining with clever movement. Lessons had clearly been learned from the FA Cup final defeat against the same opponents and there was less space in midfield for Arsenal to exploit.

Negatives

The failure to convert their chances and cash in when on top allowed Arsenal a foothold in the game which they used reasonably well. Some of the work in wide areas was not as good as it should been and their were lulls in play when the energy levels noticeably dropped.

Manager rating out of 10

6 --It was surprising to see Tiemoue Bakayoko omitted from the starting lineup and Chelsea were a little brittle in midfield as a result. The 20 minute period when the alarmingly slow Cesc Fabregas played as a wide forward was also puzzling.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Thibaut Courtois, 7 -- Made a couple of sharp if routine saves. Commanded his area well and felt with any aerial threat.

DF Gary Cahill, 7 -- Had some difficult moments on the ball in the first half, largely due to a lack of movement ahead of him. Made a couple of important challenges after the break.

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