Arsenal vs Chelsea – Premier League preview and team news

Arsenal can keep their faint hopes of winning the Premier League title alive by beating leaders Chelsea, for whom three points would leave them on the brink of their first top-flight crown since 2010.

Given that they have won eight games in a row and are playing some sparkling football, the Gunners will see this as their best chance of yet of ending manager Arsene Wenger’s barren run against counterpart Jose Mourinho, with the Frenchman having not beaten his rival in 12 attempts.

A moment of real fortune sent them through to the final of the FA Cup as it took the Gunners until extra time to beat Reading in their last match, but they are on fire in the league with Olivier Giroud seemingly at the top of his game, while the goals have returned for Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey providing invaluable contributions from midfield.

The key to success here for Arsenal will be keeping Eden Hazard quiet. The Belgian, who is likely to claim the Player of the Year award later on Sunday, could enjoy a fruitful afternoon if up against Mathieu Debuchy, who looked somewhat short of match fitness at Wembley, while Hector Bellerin would at least match Hazard for pace.

After showing some defensive frailties in recent games, Chelsea were back to their solid best in seeing off Manchester United, with their organisation proving too much to overcome for the in-form Red Devils as Hazard’s excellence is attack once again settled the match in their favour.

A draw here would leave the Blues the happier of the two sides, but should they manage to get a fifth win in succession, all they would need to claim the title is victory at Leicester City on Wednesday evening. Everything is set for an intriguing encounter.

Mikel Arteta and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain remain out for Arsenal, who also have doubts over Per Mertesacker. Should the German miss out, he will be replaced by Gabriel Paulista.

Chelsea will make a late decision on whether striker Diego Costa will be fit. If not, Didier Drogba is set to lead the line again with Loic Remy still sidelined.

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