Arsenal vs. Chelsea: Why Blues' Struggles Are Sure to Continue vs. Gunners

Jason ClarkCorrespondent IIApril 20, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 18: Didier Drogba of Chelsea clutches his leg during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final first leg match between Chelsea and Barcelona at Stamford Bridge on April 18, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

Chelsea FC has had their back against the wall lately, and an upcoming match with Arsenal won't do anything to give the Blues relief.

A win over Barcelona on Wednesday in the Champion's League tournament and Sunday's 5-1 thrashing of Tottenham in the FA Cup helped to take the sting off of what has been a lackluster performance in the Premier League thus far.

The Blues currently hold the sixth position in the table and are 25 points behind first-place Manchester United. They ended up with a draw in a winnable match with Fulham and have lost three of their last five on the road in the Premier League.

Fortunately for Chelsea, the match with Arsenal is at home, where they have won three of their last five and earned a draw in the other two.

Chelsea is also only two points back of Newcastle United and Tottenham and would earn a qualifying position in the Champion's League should they pass up both squads.

However, the loss of star striker Didier Drogba is a crushing blow that Chelsea will not be able to come back from. Drogba has been a crucial part of his squad's last few wins, as he scored against Tottenham to start the week and had the only goal in the 1-0 win over Barcelona.

The Blues will also be without defender David Luiz, who has been out with a hamstring injury. Needless to say, the loss of Drogba and Luiz wipes out any momentum the club had going into the match.

With the wins over Tottenham and Barcelona, this week was set up to be a historically great one for Chelsea, but being without these two players will make a 3-0-0 week next to impossible.

To compound Chelsea's woes, Arsenal have had some significant victories lately, and despite losing to Wigan Athletic on Wednesday, will have the momentum coming in. A win over Manchester City last week in front of over 60,000 fans will still have its effects on the squad's confidence—as will a third-place position in the Premier League table.

Chelsea would be in great position to knock off Arsenal this weekend if not for the loss of Drogba and Luiz. As a complete squad with home-field advantage, Chelsea may well have been the favorite going in.

Unfortunately for them, things have changed.