Rob Holding admitted in his post-match interview that Olivier Giroud gave Chelsea an extra dimension in attack when he came on against Arsenal yesterday.
Thomas Tuchel suffered his most frustrating defeat in charge of the Blues last night, as Arsenal ground out a 1-0 Premier League win at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea gifted the Gunners an extremely avoidable first half goal, with Jorginho and Kepa Arrizabalaga getting their wires crossed.
Mikel Arteta’s side clung on to the slim advantage over their London rivals for 75 minutes and were probably relieved when Andre Marriner blew his final whistle.
Get us a goal, Giroud
Tuchel took a more direct approach towards the closing stages by bringing Giroud on up front.
Holding recognised the threat of his former Arsenal teammate as soon as he stepped onto the pitch.
“Yeah, the last sort of 20 minutes, they threw everything forward,” admitted the Gunners defender.
“(Kurt) Zouma came up towards the end and Oli came on, and gave them a big threat up front with balls in the air.
“We had to match that and to be fair, the back five – the whole team from front to back – defended really well.”
Food for thought, Thomas
It was unlike a Tuchel Chelsea team anyone had witnessed up until this point.
Unable to pass through Arsenal or break on the counter, they resorted to lobbing balls hopefully into the box.
Every attempt was shot back by the Gunners as they fired themselves to three points.
In the Blues corner, this was not ideal preparation for their FA Cup final clash with Leicester City on Saturday.
Wednesday’s game was a chance for many to put themselves in line for a start at Wembley.
Based on that recent performance, very few could be certain of an inclusion.