By Mac Izu Nelson
Chelsea’s measured playing out from the back has been a feature of their transformation under Conte but goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and David Luiz passed their way into trouble in the second minute.
The Blues led 1-0 at half-time thanks to Marcos Alonso’s header, however, it was Hazard’s 53rd-minute strike that brought the house down in west London.
Arsenal could muster little in the way of a response as they limply succumbed to a defeat more chastening than the one they dealt out to Antonio Conte’s men in September, when the prospect of Wenger besting an elite opponent in the dugout briefly re-emerged.
Arsenal was thoroughly outclassed at Stamford Bridge, and as substitute Cesc Fabregas collected Petr Cech’s woeful clearance and lobbed into an unguarded net, the match was put to bed.
But Hazard’s goal would continue to linger in the hearts of football fans.
The Belgian glided past three Arsenal players during a run that started inside his own half before beating Petr Cech, who then gifted Cesc Fabregas a third after a poor clearance.
By the time Olivier Giroud headed a stoppage-time consolation from Nacho Monreal’s centre, the fact Liverpool can shave Chelsea’s advantage to 10 points by beating Hull City later on Saturday felt of greater significance.
Final score, 3-1 and Chelsea stretch their lead over Arsenal to 12 points.