* Drogba 8,
* Drogba 23
**Didier Drogba's brace put Chelsea back on top of the Premier League as Arsenal's title hopes were all but ended following a 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge.
Ivory Coast international striker Drogba continued his fine record against the Gunners when he smashed home at the far post following a flick by captain John Terry before drilling in a second goal midway through the first half.
Arsenal - beaten by Manchester United last weekend - played well in patches, yet once again came up short when it really mattered.
John Terry led the Chelsea side against title rivals Arsenal at Stamford Bridge.Terry, stripped of the England captaincy following revelations about his private life, was looking to send his team back to the top of the table after Manchester United's 5-0 demolition of struggling Portsmouth.
John Obi Mikel returned to the Chelsea side for the first time since the African Nations Cup, with Ashley Cole returning at left-back.
Arsenal lost 3-1 at home to United last weekend, but were aiming to move within three points of the Blues with victory this afternoon.
Manager Arsene Wenger made a couple of changes, as fit-again Abou Diaby came into midfield, while England forward Theo Walcott also started.
Veteran former captain Sol Campbell was on the bench.
Terry was, as expected, given a rousing reception from the Stamford Bridge faithful when the teams were announced before kick off.
It did not take the travelling Arsenal fans to taunt Terry, chanting "you're not captain any more" in the direction of the Chelsea centre-back.
Chelsea took the lead on eight minutes with Terry and Didier Drogba - who has tormented Arsenal with 10 goals in his previous nine games - involved.
Terry, given a free header, flicked on a corner towards the far post, where an unmarked Drogba guided the ball into the roof of the net.
Andrey Arshavin fired across goal before the visitors won a corner after a positive run by Gael Clichy - but the delivery from captain Cesc Fabregas was claimed easily by Petr Cech.
On 15 minutes, the Chelsea goalkeeper recovered well to block after Nasri slipped onto a quick pass ahead of the defence, then Fabregas chipped a pass over Ricardo Carvalho and through to Arshavin, but the Russian volleyed straight at Cech from six yards.
Chelsea doubled their lead on the break on 23 minutes, after Frank Lampard charged into the Arsenal half before slipping in Drogba, out on the right.
The Ivory Coast forward cut back inside and held off two challenges before smashing the ball past Manuel Almunia.
To their credit, Arsenal continued to try to take the game to Chelsea, perhaps more in hope than genuine expectation.
Fabregas drilled his shot wide after Alex Song had held the ball up on the edge of the penalty area.
Cole, the former Arsenal trainee, dashed into the penalty box but Walcott forced him wide before Almunia pushed the ball behind.
There appeared to be a coin thrown onto the pitch from the away supporters, the object taken away by fourth official Peter Walton.
Clichy fired wide with an ambitious effort from 30 yards as Chelsea were content to sit back, victory seemingly already secured.
Florent Malouda ghosted into the left side of the Arsenal box, before his low cross was cut out by William Gallas, the former Chelsea defender.
In stoppage time, the Frenchman needed treatment following a clash of heads with Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen.
There were no changes by either side at the start of the second half, when heavy rain started to fall on Stamford Bridge.
Arsenal came from behind to win here last season with a brace from Robin van Persie, whom the Gunners have sorely missed since he suffered an ankle injury while on international duty.
Chelsea looked in no real hurry to take the game to the visitors, who needed inspiration from somewhere as a frustrated Wenger paced the technical area.
On 51 minutes, Drogba hobbled off for treatment after falling awkwardly when shooting, but he was soon back on.
Lampard almost turned in Malouda's cross from the left, then Michael Ballack fired wide as Chelsea once more cut through Arsenal with too much ease.
A red flare was then set alight in the away end, with police eventually intervening.
Wenger had seen enough, and made a change on 64 minutes, with Walcott replaced by Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner.
The presence of the big Dane at least gave Chelsea something to think about, with Carvalho's lunge giving away a free-kick on the edge of the penalty area. Fabregas struck his effort well, curling the ball around the wall, but Cech got down to save.
Wenger's last throw of the dice came on 74 minutes when Czech winger Tomas Rosicky replaced Diaby and Emmanuel Eboue came on for Bacary Sagna.
Chelsea made a change when Ballack was replaced by Yury Zhirkov as Carlo Ancelotti looked to make sure of the result following a period of sustained Arsenal pressure.
It was almost 3-0 when, after Song had tripped Lampard, Drogba smashed a 20-yard free-kick against the crossbar.
In stoppage-time, Fabregas headed wide after the ball was crossed into the Chelsea area from the right - which just about summed up Arsenal's disappointing afternoon.
Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Cole, Terry, Carvalho, Mikel, Ballack (Zhirkov 82), Malouda, Lampard, Drogba (Kalou 90), Anelka (Joe Cole 87)
Arsenal: Almunia, Clichy, Sagna (Eboue 75), Gallas, Vermaelen, Song, Fabregas, Diaby (Rosicky 74), Nasri, Arshavin, Walcott (Bendtner 65)
Source : http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk