Arsenal vs. Chelsea: How Thomas Vermaelen's Return Impacts Matchup

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Arsenal vs. Chelsea: How Thomas Vermaelen's Return Impacts Matchup
Julian Finney/Getty Images

There's nothing worse than being without your leader or captain, but Arsenal will no longer have to worry about that when it takes on rival Chelsea on Saturday.

According to the U.K.'s Mirror, captain Thomas Vermaelen will return to the lineup for Arsenal after battling a virus that saw him miss the 1-1 draw against Manchester City.

Arsenal made the announcement official via Twitter:

Vermaelen's return probably send Per Mertesacker to the bench, meaning Vermaelen and Laurent Koscielny will reunite as the center back pairing that has performed admirably together. 

As the leader and influential defender of the Gunners, this is certainly good news for Arsenal, which has a tough matchup ahead against the Blues.

Given his strong defensive skills, goal-scoring ability and leadership mentality, you can expect Vermaelen to have a huge impact on this game.

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He'll undoubtedly aid the Gunners' attempt to stop a potent Chelsea striking attack, which is a key to victory for Arsenal on Saturday.

Vermaelen's leadership skills and love for his team are not to be questioned, as evident in this ESPN article:

"I know people are criticising Arsenal, but our main target is to keep everybody fit. If we do that, I'm really confident our team is good enough to compete for everything," he said.

Vermaelen will put his skills to test when he faces compatriot Eden Hazard and Chelsea on Saturday at 7:45 a.m. ET.

 

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