Chelsea play their second London derby of the week against a struggling Arsenal side after defeating West Ham 3-0. The Gunners, who have won just 4 of their 14 games in Premier League this season were dumped out of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday by Manchester City.
The poor run of results have put Mikel Arteta’s job under intense scrutiny ahead of the busy festive fixtures, but Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta believes Arsenal are a top team with dangerous players. The Blues right-back last faced Arsenal in Chelsea’s FA Cup final defeat last season, and has asked his team to not underestimate the Gunners.
Speaking to Chelsea’s official website, Azpilicueta said “We were obviously disappointed with that result [FA Cup defeat] but now we’re four months later, it’s a different competition and a new game. They are not in their best form but we know their qualities and that they have dangerous players so we have to cope with that.”
“We respect them and we know it’s going to be tough but we need points so hopefully we can go there and play our game. We have the confidence and belief to do that and obviously we will try to get the points.”
Speaking at the pre-match conference Lampard agreed Arsenal were a dangerous side and said “They are a good team with a good manager. They have had some tough results recently. The general wave for every team in the Premier League this season has been more inconsistent than usual. It’s not my concern exactly where they are at. My concern is the team at face value in terms of quality, and they are a high-quality team.”
“Sometimes the idea of playing a derby is the spur the team needs to try and get a result. We have to expect the best Arsenal which is a really good footballing team with really good players, well coached with rotations in their team and threats in attacking areas.”