PIERRE-EMERICK Aubameyang and Masoun Mount both had early chances but it took Frank Lampard’s team just five minutes to take the lead.
Mount squared the ball for Olivier Giroud in the box, the Frenchman helped the ball on its way into the path of Christian Pulisic and the American dinked it past Emiliano Martínez.
It was an open game with both sides having further chances but, as the half went on, the Gunners really grew into the game.
They were level after 28 minutes thanks to a penalty from Aubameyang. The forward was pulled down in the box by Cesar Azpilicueta, the Blues defender slightly lucky not to also be sent off, and the striker drilled it home brilliantly.
Azpilicueta was soon taken off with a hamstring injury and replaced by Anders Christiansen and the new man nearly gave away a penalty when he brought Nicolas Pepe down just outside the area.
Pulisic, who was Chelsea’s best player in the first half, had a chance within a minute of the second half starting as he ran through the Gunners’ defence put curled the ball just wide.
However the missed opportunity wasn’t the worst news for the Blues, as the former Borussia Dortmund man injured his hamstring as he went for the shot and he had to be replaced.
Frank Lampard’s side were much the better team early in the second period but in the blink of an eye found themselves behind for the first time, in the 67th minute.
Hector Bellerin ran through the defence before the ball found its way to Nicolas Pepe, the winger passed to Aubameyang inside the area, the former Dortmund man beat Antonio Rudiger all ends up before beautifully lifting the ball over Willy Caballero.
Just six minutes later the Blues’ comeback was made even more difficult. Mateo Kovacic was unlucky to get sent off, after being adjudged to have brought down Granit Xhaka. It looked to be a terrible decision but as a second yellow VAR couldn’t help Anthony Taylor.
Martinez gave Arsenal fans a collective panic as he came for a ball over the top and looked like he might have handled in the area but VAR either didn’t check it or judged the ball and his hands were still in the area.
The Blues lost Pedro extremely late on to another injury, after he landed awkwardly on his shoulder, in what was likely to be the Spanish winger’s last game for the west London side.
The north London side had shocked everyone to reach the final, by defeating Manchester City in the semi-final, but thoroughly deserved the win.
Arteta’s first trophy, just months after replacing Unai Emery for his first managerial job, also means the club have qualified for next season’s Europa League.