Wenger’s Mourinho hoodoo continues as goalless draw suits Chelsea
Arsene Wenger came into this game having never beaten manager counterpart Jose Mourinho in 12 attempts, but knew a victory against Chelsea today would give them a slim chance of catching them up in the race for the title.
The duo started 10 points apart with six games each to go in the Premier League, and in the end the Frenchman couldn’t make it 13th time lucky against the Portuguese as the two sides drew 0-0.
Following Wenger and Mourinho’s touchline incident last time these teams met, this was always going to be a fiery occasion, and it showed both on the pitch and from the crowd in the stands.
Oscar had the first real chance of the game, as he lobbed keeper David Ospina, who then took out the Brazilian, but Hector Bellerin cleared the ball away.
Cesc Fabregas, returning to the club he once captained, was booked in the first half, after referee Michael Oliver deemed the Spaniard to have dived in the area, after a challenge from compatriot Cazorla.
Diminutive attacker Cazorla was involved in the action just after the half-hour mark, this time at the other end of the pitch, with his shot blocked by Gary Cahill’s arm. Again, the ref waved away protests, as in fairness the defender didn’t know much about it.
Chelsea Brazilians Willian and Ramires, meanwhile, were involved in a smart move minutes later, but the latter’s shot was saved and held low by Ospina.
Just before the break, Mesut Ozil had a shot on target after a scramble in the box, but it was straight at Thibaut Courtois.
The start to the second half was far more low key, and it took 20 minutes until the first effort on goal. Substitute Didier Drogba lined himself up for a shot just outside of the area, but it was tame and straight at the keeper.
Arsenal soon after had a chance of their own, from unlikely source Per Mertesacker, but the big German defender was wide, after the ball laid onto him following a free-kick.
The game finished goalless, despite a late Gunners charge, and the result now puts Chelsea 10 points ahead of both Arsenal and Manchester City, with a game in hand on the latter.
Just five fixtures remain for the Blues, and surely no one can stop them winning the title now. Mourinho cam secure the Premier League if his side beat Leicester City and then Crystal Palace in the next two clashes.