Not another 0-0!

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Arsene Wenger’s reserved block of seats in the Chelsea press box for the first leg of the semi


Like Brenda in Bristol, you feel like chorusing ‘Not another nil-nil!’

The first leg of the Chelsea v Arsenal League Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge was mostly memorable for the curious sight of Gunners gaffer Arsene Wenger sitting among the reptiles of the press in the media seats.

A row of seats was specially reserved for the manager after his touchline ban, and Wenger was both impressed by the view from the box (infinitely better than down in the dugout, where the camber of the pitch makes it almost impossible to see what’s happening in front of the west stand) and the civil way he was treated.

The only dodgy moment came during a good-natured chant of ‘Arsene Wenger, we want you to stay’ from the Chelsea fans close to the press box… but the manager smiled wryly and carried on watching the action.

I say ‘action’, but it was largely inaction. Yet another 0-0 after the disappointing Norwich 0-0.

At least in this match Eden Hazard was creative, Cesar Azpilicueta was dazzling – and was wearing the captain’s armband, and N’Golo Kante was his impish best.

But Alvaro Morata had another relatively disappointing match, and Chelsea simply could not break through and score, despite having the lion’s share of possession.

Overall, Wenger was happier than Tony Conte, ahead of the second leg at the Emirates.


The Arsenal manager resumes his seat in the press box after half-time