Community Shield – Chelsea v Arsenal by JMT
On the 2nd of August Arsenal will play what I consider to be one of the most important matches of the new season. Of course, this is not a Premier League game but rather the Community Shield that I am referring to. There is a myriad of reasons why I would be incredibly disheartened if we were to lose this match, and there are a great number of positives gained if we won.
Firstly, after years of selling our top players to rival clubs and seeing our ex captains play for our close competitors in the league we managed to make a signing of intent from the biggest financial doping team in the league. Petr Cech will be facing his previous employers of 11 years and it will certainly be interesting to see whether the pressure of the occasion will get to him. If the mentality of the keeper is not in check, (yes… poor pun intended) that is going to prove a major obstacle in finishing the game on the winning score line. A nervous goalkeeper translates through to the defence and we cannot afford to make any blunders down our end of the pitch as Chelsea generally do not need many chances to kill a game.
Another major reason why this game is a must win is Wenger’s record against Mourinho. He has not beaten him in all competitions across thirteen matches to date. To add fuel to this already great fire, Mourinho has taken every chance possible to disrespect one of the longest standing managers in the English game with throwaway comments such as Wenger being a “voyeur” and “specialist in failure”. Wenger more than anyone needs to silently show that though he might be an old dog, he still has new tricks, and walking past Mourinho and the Chelsea team to pick up the trophy could not be a better way to do so.
Finally, this game being held at a neutral venue should be the perfect occasion for our team to produce their best football. I personally feel that the Emirates is not vocal enough when Chelsea arrive. Whilst we can generate a great atmosphere when Tottenham come to play we don’t offer the same support against Chelsea, a greater competitor in the modern game. Stamford Bridge is Mourinho’s stomping ground so it is always going to be a difficult feat there regardless of which team you are. Wembley will provide us with the optimum conditions to spur the team on and in a match which where the outcome can only be one winner we need to prove over 90 minutes that we can beat a Jose Mourinho side.
I believe football has a lot to do with psychology and winning this match will go a long way to making our team believe we have what it takes to dethrone the current champions.