The next few days could well be the most pivotal in this year’s Premier League title race. First up, Chelsea will face fellow title contenders Arsenal on Saturday at Stamford Bridge in what will be a monster game in regards to both sides’ ambitions.
It really is shaping up as a key game for Chelsea after losing to Aston Villa last weekend. If Chelsea were to lose and Manchester City were to beat Fulham at the Etihad Stadium, then City would be only three points behind but with three games in hand as well, which obviously looks very favorable for City.
City will face derby rivals Manchester United on Tuesday though in what will no doubt be another pivotal game. That’s why the next few days are so key, and it all starts with Chelsea and Arsenal on Saturday.
Arsenal could also make direct ground on Chelsea if they were to win the game — a point behind with a game in hand would then be their position. At this stage, these points are critical. After being defeated last week, the last thing Jose Mourinho will be looking to do is to endure back-to-back defeats — again, not at this stage. It’s the wrong time to be having a blip as it just brings more pressure.
Chelsea will also have the Champions League to contend with after drawing Paris Saint-Germain in Friday’s draw for the quarterfinal stage. Typically, the weekend after Champions League midweek games can be difficult. Tiredness becomes a factor and teams lose games they shouldn’t. You have to allow for that potentially happening to Chelsea, and that’s why defeat to Arsenal would be closing the door that little bit more.
Liverpool are not to be forgotten too. If City do not take advantage, then you would have to think Liverpool will. They’re in fantastic form, and it is unthinkable that if Chelsea do indeed drop points, that one of City or Liverpool will not take advantage. In reality, they’ll probably both pounce and make Chelsea suffer if they do not take care of their own business.
As the title race enters the final months, it is shaping up to be one of the most hotly contested by so many teams in a long, long time. Four teams, each with critical games in the next couple of months. This is where champions establish themselves — that we know. Whether Chelsea or Arsenal can or not … we’re about to find out.