The high point of the second round of Premier League matches in the 2018/19 season will be the London derby between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge this evening.
Both teams are looking for new identities under Premier League newcomers Maurizio Sarri and Unai Emery respectively. While Chelsea were impressive in their 3-0 win over Huddersfield Town last weekend, Arsenal were unable to show any signs of progress in a 2-0 loss at home to Manchester City – but that may be down far more to the quality of the champions rather than any shortcomings on their part.
The Gunners need to improve their attacking play and get more out of the likes of Mesut Ozil and Henrikh Mkhitaryan running. This will in turn bring Gabonese star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang into the game, and he will surely relish the chance to go up against the Blues’ fragile-looking central defensive pair of David Luiz and Antonio Rudiger.
The Chelsea-Arsenal battle is just one of six matches scheduled for Saturday, August 18. The round kicks off with an early-afternoon clash between Cardiff City and Newcastle United – two teams looking to bounce from their opening round defeats at the hands of Bournemouth and Tottenham Hotspur respectively.
The afternoon games feature another London derby as Tottenham host Fulham at Wembley, Wilfred Ndidi will look to inspire Leicester City at home against Wolverhampton Wanderers, Idrissa Gueye’s Everton will face Southampton at home, while West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini will want a major improvement from his team against Bournemouth.after the 4-0 mauling they suffered at the hands of Liverpool last weekend. See full fixtures on the back page.