Arsenal will be without a trio of midfielders for their trip to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon.

Santi Cazorla, Theo Walcott and Francis Coquelin are all missing for the Gunners, as they look to emulate their success over the Blues in the FA Cup final in May.

That was an important win for Arsenal and especially their manager Arsene Wenger, with many judges suggesting that victory kept the Frenchman in a job, but the veteran boss will need to come up with something to have some solidity in the centre of the park.

Coquelin will miss the match against the champions with a hamstring strain, while Walcott picked up a knock in the controversial Europa League win over FC Koln on Thursday night and that is likely to keep him out of this clash, according to BBC Sport.

Spanish playmaker Cazorla remains on the sidelines as he continues his return from a long-term injury issue.

Wenger will take his men across London off the back of an up and down start to the campaign. His side have two wins and two defeats in the Premier League so far, but did get their Europa League run underway with a victory.

Both their defeats this season have come on the road as a lack of steel in the centre of the park has proven costly. Arsenal lost the reverse fixture against Chelsea 3-1 last term and they will be eager to avoid a repeat.

That was not their only slip up against the big sides in the previous campaign. In total the Gunners managed just 10pts in their 10 matches against their fellow top six teams, which went some way to seeing them miss out on a Champions League spot.

They have already been condemned to a beating by one such side this year too after they were trounced 4-0 at Liverpool last month.

Wenger will know his club have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 12 visits to the Bridge, but on the flip side of that wins in the FA Cup final and on penalties in the Community Shield should at least give his players belief.

The Frenchman has the option of using Alexis Sanchez from the start against the Blues, with the Chilean desperate to prove his worth ahead of a potential move, either in January or the end of the campaign.


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