Chelsea must have Costa fit - 5 things we learned from the Community Shield

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It might be considered a glorified friendly, but there were some telling signs from the Wembley show piece. 

Arsenal triumphed 1-0 over Chelsea to give Arsene Wenger the first laugh of the season, but was there anything else we could take from the game?

Below we take a look at 5 thins the Community Shield told us.


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1. Chelsea need Diego Costa fit

From a Chelsea perspective a worrying sign from the Community Shield was the inept performance of Loic Remy. The Frenchman seemed to lose his understanding of the offside rule and subsequently put in a dire performance which saw him hauled off at half-time.

Manchester United misfit Radamel Falcao performed admirably in Remy's place but it is clear that the Colombian has still not regained the touch which made him one of Europe's most feared strikers.

Costa's tenacious style and the way he expertly leads the line has made him an irreplaceable asset to Chelsea, one that they simply cannot afford to lose.

He was the vital focal point in the Blues' attack and they will be praying that his constant hamstring niggles do not have a major impact upon his season.

2. The stage is set for the Ox in 2015/16

For too long the word 'potential' has surrounded Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who is a huge talent who has yet to fulfil his capabilities on a consistent basis. However, the signs seem to suggest that this could be about to change.

He scored a sensational goal in the Community Shield and picked up the man of the match for his valiant efforts against a determined Chelsea side.

After a very promising pre-season the stage now seems well and truly set for the Ox to explode in the Premier League with his performance at Wembley only contributing to the hope of Arsenal fans.

Let's hope injury doesn't strike him down once again.

3. Walcott provides necessary variety up front

While it might not have been a stand-out performance by Theo Walcott it nevertheless underlined his importance in this current Arsenal squad - hence the new contract.

The fluidity and mobility he brings to the Arsenal front line means defenders will often have to alter their style to cope with his pace and runs in behind.

Gary Cahill and John Terry coped with Walcott well during the match but the presence he had meant that they sat deeper, allowing Arsenal's creative technicians more space in crucial areas.

Olivier Giroud came on and reminded us what he is all about with his hold up play, but Walcott in a central role could be a prized asset for Arsene Wenger.

4. Fabregas struggles in No.10 role

Most of Cesc Fabregas's success last season came from when he was operating in a deeper role alongside Nemanja Matic, it was in the position where he was better able to display his awesome passing range and ability to control the tempo of games.

In the Community Shield, to compensate for Arsenal's strong midfield, Fabregas was pushed further forward, allowing Ramires to partner Matic.

The positional alteration meant that Fabregas was shut down quicker and his influence upon the game was reduced. He may not be the best defensive-minded player in midfield but it seems obvious to me that if Mourinho wants Fabregas at his best he has to play deeper - similar to Santi Cazorla at Arsenal.

5. The league title could be more interesting in 2015/16

Last season no team got close to Chelsea as they strolled to the league title, only losing three times along the way.

While I believe Chelsea will still be favourites for the title they may find it a lot more difficult this time round, especially seeing as they have made no signings thus far which have significantly strengthened them.

A glorified friendly it may be, but it saw Wenger finally put to bed his Mourinho hoodoo and proved that Arsenal have grown in stature from the side that the Special One hammered 6-0 not so long ago.

The time is set for Arsenal to finally make a title challenge and with other rivals adding some star names we may see a slightly more entertaining title race this year - well let's hope so.

Arsenal fans, Chelsea fans, what did the Community Shield tell you? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.

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