Aaron Ramsey typifies Arsenal resolve in Stamford Bridge stalemate
Arsenal hit the post and had a goal disallowed as an encouraging performance saw them take a point at Chelsea in a 0-0 draw.
Going into Sunday's game with a record of five consecutive defeats at Chelsea, this was a much improved display from Arsenal and they could even have taken maximum points -- not a claim that can often be made when visiting another of the big sides.
Aaron Ramsey, so poor in the 4-0 defeat away to Liverpool at the end of August, hit the post after a mazy run through the Chelsea defence on 41 minutes. In the second half, Shkodran Mustafi had a headed goal ruled out for offside.
In the dying stages, Arsenal were given a sniff of a potential winner when David Luiz was shown a straight red card for a studs-up challenge on Sead Kolasinac, but a point was good enough.
That 4-0 defeat away at Liverpool prior to the international break still looms large but Arsenal looked far more structured and disciplined than they often do on such visits and Antonio Conte's decision to bring on Tiemoue Bakayoko at half time was testament to the impact they were having.
A clean sheet was a big boost, so too the eradication of naivety or vulnerability in the centre of midfield.
Club record signing Alexandre Lacazette didn't offer enough in the central striker's role before he was taken off and a win was arguably there for the taking.
Manager rating out of 10
8 -- Arsene Wenger has a poor record away at the bigger teams in recent seasons, but this was a big improvement. Having seen off Chelsea in the FA Cup final and Community Shield, as well as taking three points at home against them last season, Wenger seems to have the edge over Conte.
Leaving Alexis Sanchez on the bench was a big call, so too resisting a change back to a back four, but Arsenal's performance backed up Wenger's decisions.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Petr Cech, 6 -- Looked alert against his former side, making a stop to deny Pedro on 21 minutes and plucking a firm effort from substitute Eden Hazard out of the air on 79 minutes. Didn't put a foot wrong.
DF Laurent Koscielny, 6 -- His presence tends to transmit an element of calm and Koscielny organised the back three effectively at Stamford Bridge. He did enough to put Pedro off when through on goal on 21 minutes.
DF Shkodran Mustafi, 5 -- Had another unconvincing display at the back. It was Mustafi who played Pedro onside on 21 minutes and a mistake almost let Alvaro Morata in. Did have the ball in the next from a Granit Xhaka free kick but was judged offside.
DF Nacho Monreal, 7 -- He has adapted impressively well to a new role at centre-back and looked largely untroubled. Even had a shot blocked in a dangerous area as Arsenal pushed for a late winner.
MF Hector Bellerin, 6 -- The Spaniard looks more comfortable now the sale of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has allowed him to move back to the right and he was a useful attacking foil, delivering two dangerous crosses in the first 20 minutes.
MF Aaron Ramsey, 8 -- Ramsey was much more present in the game than during the Anfield trip and learned his lessons from that afternoon as he helped to screen the back three effectively. Almost scored with a fantastic slaloming run and shot against the post on 41 minutes. A fine all-round display.
MF Granit Xhaka, 7 -- Like Ramsey, he was far more alert to the danger Chelsea posed in behind him and this was a much better afternoon from a player who divides opinion.
MF Sead Kolasinac, 6 -- The summer signing has had an explosive impact but, bar one rifled effort which was saved by Thibaut Courtois on 20 minutes, Kolasinac largely hung back on the left, bringing balance to the side as Bellerin charged forwards.
FW Alex Iwobi, 5 -- The youngster had a difficult evening in central midfield in the Europa League win over Cologne but even when returning to a more natural position he struggled to influence the game.
FW Alexandre Lacazette, 5 -- Looked lively early on and had a smart shot saved following a cross from Bellerin on 17 minutes, but he messed up when trying to convert the rebound after Ramsey struck the post. Faded.
FW Danny Welbeck, 6 -- Bellerin found him with a cross on 16 minutes but the ball was just too high and Welbeck had to reach for it, missing the target as a result. A hip injury on 73 minutes ended his afternoon.
Alexis Sanchez (for Lacazette, 66), 6 -- Took up a central position after coming on but moved wide following the introduction of Giroud. Never looked like winning the game.
Olivier Giroud (for Welbeck, 73), N/R -- Was starved of chances as the game closed up, and even after Luiz's red card the chance he was waiting for never materialised.
Mohamed Elneny (for Iwobi, 79), N/R -- Brought on to shut the game down. A booking for a foul on Hazard was his most noticeable contribution.
Tom is one of ESPN FC's Arsenal bloggers. You can follow him on Twitter @tomEurosport