To add further spice to the game it's Arsene Wenger's 1,000th game as Arsenal manager and he has never beaten a team managed by Jose Mourinho. In 10 previous attempts Arsenal have come up short against Mourinho teams with the most recent being the 0-0 draw in the league in December. Chelsea parked the bus that night and were fortunate to end the game with 10 players and without conceding a penalty too.
They're at home this time and can't afford anything other than a win if they're going to put pressure on the chasing pack. The Chelsea defence has been miserly this season and they have the tightest defence in the league. They're far from invincible though as Villa showed when they beat them last week.
Mourinho is in his second spell at Chelsea and they have never lost a home league game under him although that record should have been ended by West Brom earlier this season. Chelsea were again aided by some very poor refereeing on that occasion and it's hilarious to hear Mourinho complain about referees considering the decisions that have gone in their favour far too often this season. It was great to see Ramires finally get his marching orders for a disgusting lunge against Villa last week and fans of most other clubs will tell you he had got away with far too much for far too long up to that moment.
Arsenal have struggled a little in recent weeks and have failed to dominate teams in games they should be dominating, but it's hardly surprising considering the players they are missing through injury. The list includes Mesut Ozil, Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere and any team would find it difficult to cope without four players of their calibre. It's a credit to the players that are playing that they are still in contention in the league as well as being through to the FA Cup semi finals.
With all of those injuries the Arsenal team almost picks itself with the only real decision for the boss being whether to play Mikel Arteta or Mathieu Flamini in midfield. There's a chance he will pick them both and that could well be the case if Tomas Rosicky isn't passed fit to play. He picked up a knock against Spurs last week and a decision on his inclusion has yet to be made.
If everybody is fit I think the team will probably be the same as the one which beat Spurs 1-0 last Sunday and a similar result would be fantastic. Arsenal haven't done well away to the other teams in the top four this season with City beating them 6-3 and Liverpool winning 5-1 and a much better performance is required against Chelsea. A draw would not be a bad result but a win could be just what they need to instill enough belief to win the title.
In an ideal world Arsenal would go to Chelsea and dominate the game from first to last minute before winning by a few goals. With some of their best players missing that won't be easy though and the chances are they will have to be at their best defensively like they were against Spurs last week. I don't expect Chelsea to come out all guns blazing either though and I suspect Mourinho would be happy to nick the game by the only goal no matter whether it comes in the first or the last minute.
Chelsea have become very dependant on Eden Hazard this season for their creativity and for Arsenal to win the game they will have to keep him as quiet as possible. At least Ramires won't be around to put his boot in and the shins of the Arsenal players should be a lot safer with him suspended. The team are going to have to work very hard to get the result they want and hopefully the fact they had no midweek game and Chelsea did will help them to do just that.
The last time they had no midweek game was before the trip to Stoke and that led to an inept display. Hopefully the players will have used the week to get themselves in the right frame of mind for this game and can put in a much better performance against Chelsea. Arsenal have a very good away record in the league this season with nine wins and only four defeats in their 15 away games and they have actually scored more goals away from home than at home.
Sometimes football games can be decided by the smallest of things such as a lucky bounce, a deflection or a dodgy call from the officials. Let's just hope any of those things that are going around end up going in Arsenal's favour. I'm not really bothered how Arsenal win the game as long as they win it.
The biggest problem for them could be scoring though with all of those players missing against a well disciplined Chelsea defence. Thankfully Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has overcome his slight knock as he offers that something different the team needs to worry that Chelsea defence. If he can get the chance to run at them at pace he might just cause enough panic to score or make a chance for someone else. Hopefully he will have his shooting boots on if a chance comes his way unlike last week.
It will hopefully be a thrilling day for Arsenal which will end Chelsea's unbeaten home record under Mourinho while our boss wins his landmark game to put Arsenal right up there with eight games to go. If things don't go their way it's not the end of the world though and once the players give their all I can live with the result. Of course I'm hoping for a win and I think the players are capable of getting it. Hopefully they can find the belief and a performance to match and make Arsene's 1,000th game in charge one of his most memorable ones ever.
That's it for today.
See you tomorrow.