The London rivals get their seasons under way in earnest when they kick things off against each other at the iconic ‘Home of Football’
Arsenal and Chelsea will lock horns at Wembley on Sunday when they contest the FA Community Shield.
Arsenal to win any major trophy in 17-18 – 15/8
The Gunners ensured their place in English football’s annual season curtain-raiser by beating Antonio Conte’s Premier League champions in the FA Cup final and are chasing their 15th title.
Chelsea, meanwhile, can lift the shield for the fifth time in their history if they overcome their London rivals, with their last triumph coming in 2009 against Manchester United.
|Game||Arsenal vs Chelsea|
|Date||Sunday, August 6|
TV CHANNEL & LIVE STREAM
In the UK, the match will be available to watch live on television on BT Sport 1. Viewers can also stream live online via the BT Sport app.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|BT Sport 1 / BT Sport 4K UHD||BT Sport app|
In the US, the game will be available to watch live on television on Fox Sports 1 and can be streamed online via Fox Sports GO.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
|Fox Sports 1||Fox Sports GO|
WHAT IS THE COMMUNITY SHIELD?
The FA Community Shield is a Super Cup-style competition that is played annually between the winners of the Premier League and the winners of the FA Cup. It takes place at Wembley Stadium and serves as a type of curtain-raiser for the new English season.
Lacazette, the new Ian Wright?
Proceeds from the Community Shield are given to community initiatives and charities around England, with revenue from ticket and programme sales distributed to the 124 clubs that competed in the FA Cup to be donated to local projects of their choice. The remainder of the money raised goes to the FA’s national charity partners.
Manchester United are the current holders of the title and the Red Devils are the most successful team in the competition’s history, having won it 21 times.
Why is it not called the Charity Shield?
Before 2002, the Community Shield was known as the Charity Shield. The FA changed the name of the competition after falling foul of UK charity law, with the Charity Commission concluding that the governing body broke regulations by not informing ticket holders of the exact details regarding how the charities would benefit
Despite the name change, the basic idea behind the competition and how the revenue is distributed remains essentially the same, with the FA keen to engage more with football in communities while complying with regulations.
“We want to ensure that good causes continue to receive financial support from football through the FA Community Shield,” FA spokesperson Adrian Bevington said following the name change in 2002. “Additionally, we want to see individuals who are some of the game’s real heroes receive recognition for their great work.”
SQUAD & TEAM NEWS
Alexis Sanchez has returned to London and has been training with his Arsenal team-mates but the Chile international could be sprung from the bench instead of being a starter, having missed most of pre-season.
Arsene Wenger has not decided whether he will involve Sanchez and Shkodran Mustafi for the game, with the pair enjoying a longer break than the rest of the squad due to their involvement in the Confederations Cup.
Bellerin: We will beat Chelsea
Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey are carrying slight knocks, but the pair are set to train on Saturday and should be involved on Sunday. However, two players who will not play a part in the game are Francis Coquelin and Gabriel, since both players are nursing more serious injuries.
Potential Arsenal XI: Cech; Bellerin, Koscielny, Monreal Kolasinac; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Xhaka, Ramsey, Ozil; Iwobi, Lacazette
Chelsea will be without the services of their star midfielder Eden Hazard as the Belgian recovers from a broken ankle he sustained while on international duty and Cesc Fabregas is expected to line up in the centre of the pitch alonside N’Golo Kante.
In addition, Pedro will not be risked after suffering a concussion in his side’s earlier pre-season friendly against the Gunners in Bejing two weeks ago. The former Barcelona star had a nasty collision with David Ospina and will wear a mask due to the fact he sustained multiple fractures to his face.
New signing Tiemoue Bakayoko arrived from Monaco with a pre-existing injury and he is not likely to feature until a few weeks into the season, but Alvaro Morata should play.
Potential Chelsea XI: Courtois; Cahill, Luiz, Azpilicueta; Fabregas, Kante, Alonso, Moses; Willian, Morata, Batshuayi.
BETTING & MATCH ODDS
Chelsea are considered 11/8 favourites to win at Wembley, according to dabblebet, while the odds on Arsenal to beat the Blues are 2/1. A draw is avalaible at 12/5.
Neymar: I told Pique not to say I’m staying!
Conte’s men already defeated the Gunners 3-0 in pre-season and there are improved odds of 20/1 available for them to repeat that scoreline on Sunday.
COMMUNITY SHIELD PREVIEW
Having brought the curtain down on the English season last term, Chelsea and Arsenal fittingly get things under way in 2017-18. Expectations are high at both clubs, who will have designs on winning the Premier League, and the encounter at Wembley will be an opportunity to lay down an early marker.
They have already come up against each other during pre-season, with Chelsea emerging with an emphatic 3-0 win in Beijing, but things should be much closer in what is a more competitive setting.
Michy Batshuayi scored twice for the Blues in that July friendly and the Belgium international will be complemented in attack this time by the talents of new signing Morata, who arrived in a big-money move from Real Madrid last month.
All the latest transfer talk & rumours
Despite winning in such convincing fashion against Arsenal, Chelsea lost their subsequent friendlies against Bayern Munich and Inter, so Conte will be demanding an improvement on Sunday with the Premier League opener just a week away.
Arsenal, meanwhile, are looking to put last season’s disappointing fifth-place finish behind them and a win over Chelsea in the Community Shield would be a welcome boost to Wenger’s men ahead of the new campaign.
The Gunners won four out of their six pre-season friendlies, which included impressive wins over Bayern and Benfica. While it is foolish to read too much in to pre-season performances, new signings Sead Kolasinac and Alexandre Lacazette have settled in well, giving cause for optimism.
Article continues below
With contract concerns Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez also likely to feature, the Arsenal squad is looking somewhat stronger and they can issue a statement of intent with a strong display.