Our Terrible Record Against Jose! By Dan Smith
There haven’t been too many North London Derbies I have been as worried about as this one on Sunday. Nervous? Of course? But worried about what’s going to happen? No.
I don’t get angry when we lose any more. I have developed this worrying level of acceptance. Yet going into a NLD and already accepting defeat hasn’t happened often.
You see, this idea that form goes out of the window for these fixtures is kind of a myth. When we were the dominating force, in the period of our three title wins (1997 – 2004) guess how many times we lost this fixture? Once. ..
In fact Mr Wenger never lost to Spurs at Highbury. Thierry Henry never lost in this fixture at all. They only have the single League victory at the Emirates. To clarify, the Premiership was formed in 1993 yet Spurs have only twice won at Arsenal. So the idea that anything can happen on Derby day simply isn’t true.
When we were dominating, we didn’t lose to them. Now, while certainly not comparing them to our legendary teams, we do have to accept that as things stand, they are in a better moment. They have the two in-form attackers in the country, we have zero creativity.
They have just produced two typical Jose Mourinho master classes while we don’t seem to know what our identity is.
They are playing like they believe in the message, every one knowing their plan, you could argue that their players are loving their football at the moment. Even worse, they have players who have been part of their set up for a long time who will want to go for our throat.
How many leaders do we have?
And the biggest obstacle is their manager.
He’s never made any secret he likes beating us and his smugness just will make this experience worse. He’s already got his sound bites ready for the pre match interview and will be the first to kick us when we are down afterwards. Expect him to remind everyone about his record against Arsenal
Arsenal 2-2 Chelsea, Chelsea 0-0 Arsenal
At Highbury we twice throw away a lead keeping us five points behind the leaders.
We had to win at the Bridge to have any realistic chance of stopping Chelsea from a first title win in 50 years. It’s clear though that Jose is bothered that despite us finishing 2nd, we still get more compliments for our style of football.
2005-2006 Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal (community Shield), Chelsea 1-0 Arsenal, Arsenal 0-2 Chelsea
In the space of two weeks, first at Cardiff, then the Bridge, Drogba bullies Senderos. You could argue the defender never recovered.
Arsene Wenger questions UEFA for allowing ‘financial doping’ given their assurance on financial fair play. Mr Mourinho greatly offends his rival by labelling him a Voyeur, making their final clash at Highbury a feisty one, Chelsea ‘s first ever win on our ground in the Premiership era.
2006-2007 Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal (League Cup Final), Chelsea 1-1 Arsenal, Arsenal 1-1Chelsea
In perhaps an arrogant decision, Mr Wenger decides for the League Cup to stick with the youngsters who got him to the Final. The issue being the opponents were the Champions strongest 11 possible. While the kids did us proud, if he knew how long our trophy drought would last maybe he would have decided differently?
We get a small measure of revenge, celebrating a draw at the Emirates which cost Chelsea the title. Jose walks off, holding up 5 fingers to indicate how many trophies he’s won. Something tells me he never forgave us gooners for that?
2013-2014 Arsenal 0-2 Chelsea (League Cup), Arsenal 0-0 Chelsea, Chelsea 6-0 Arsenal
The League Cup was two reserve teams against each other.
We were in the title race, yet this was the year leading to Jose’s Specialist in Failure quote. Given that this was when everyone else was celebrating Mr Wenger’s longevity in the game this showed how little respect Jose had for the man.
Shamefully in Wenger’s 1000th game in charge, we were humiliated 6-0. To be fair Jose could have rubbed it in more than he did.
2014-15 Chelsea 2-0, Arsenal 0-0 Chelsea
The first encounter sees Wenger shove his rival on the touchline. At this point both parties agree to not talk about one another. For second year running Chelsea play for a 0-0 draw at the Emirates.
2015-2016 Arsenal 1-0 Chelsea (Community Shield)
Chelsea 2-0 Arsenal, Arsenal 0-1 Chelsea
We are harshly treated in the League fixture. With the game goalless, Gabriel gets sent off after being provoked by Costa. We end the game with 9 men.
It’s funny though. Jose, one of the few managers to count the Shield as a ‘title’ doesn’t count this as Mr Wenger beating him. They don’t shake hands.
Man United 1-1 Arsenal, Arsenal 2-0 Man United
When we don’t play well but get a stoppage time equaliser at Old Trafford, Mr Jose isn’t happy. When he loses to us in the League for the first time, he points to how many changes made in preparation for the Europa League.
Arsenal 1-3 Man United, Man United 2-1 Arsenal
Even Jose has to acknowledge the breath-taking performance from De Gea at the Emirates.
This time Arsenal rest players at Old Trafford due to the Europa League.
2018-19 Man United 2-2 Arsenal
Jose is a couple of weeks from the sack, so this is seen as a good time to go to Old Trafford. We twice throw away a lead.
2019-20 Spurs 2-1 Arsenal
Both managers first NLD has played under strange conditions, in front of zero fans. We play well but Arteta pays for trying out Kolasinac as a centre back as he gets his feet muddled up again.
So we have beaten Jose just twice in 21 attempts. You sense he enjoys beating us more than anyone else, as he wished his sides would get the plaudits we did.
When he was linked to replace Emery, I always saw it as a marriage that would never work. Arsenal’s values, principles, outlook on the sport couldn’t be more different to José’s.
Spurs have just produced two typical Jose performances in their last two games, and you know he will enjoy making a game plan for us. He won’t be fearing us.
More than bragging rights, I would love us to wipe that smile off his face…
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