As Chelsea head into a Super Sunday clash against Manchester United, a lot of talking has arisen about the Blues’ chances of staying undefeated until the end of the season.
We are now eight games in to the Premier League season and Chelsea are yet to taste defeat. The Blues have won seven and drawn just one, which has led to comparisons between them and the historic 2003 Arsenal side that won the Premier League, having gone unbeaten throughout the season.
If there is a manager that knows how to win, it would be Jose Mourinho, and I believe an undefeated season is something that he is more than capable of doing, but I don’t think it will be his focus.
Any Mourinho side is hard to beat, especially once they’ve gone in front. Defensively, Chelsea are strong – they do not rotate their back four very often, which is something I believe puts them above the teams around them. Winning starts from the back and Chelsea aren’t a team known for leaking goals. Consistency can surely only strengthen the back four.
Chelsea’s midfield this season is extremely versatile and possesses a number of attacking options. The ability to play Cesc Fabregas in a more defensive role or as a number ten is like having a fourth substitution for the Blues. Despite their array of attacking talent, you cannot forget about Nemanja Matic. The Serbian is a rock in Chelsea’s midfield and allows the rests of the team to play. Matic is dominant and can pick a pass too.
As the fantastic start to their season has shown, they are not a team that lack goals either – as long as their strikers stay fit, that is. Diego Costa has adapted to life in the Premier League with ease and has been scoring for fun. With the Spaniard currently out injured, Loic Remy proved, in the 12 minutes he played in the Champions League clash against Maribor, that he is capable of performing at the high level that Chelsea require him to.
One problem that Chelsea may face is injuries, just like any team. What worries me is the forwards. Costa is already injured and it is unclear what condition he is in. Alongside this, Remy suffered a scare this week, which would leave Didier Drogba the only available senior striker. While the Ivorian is no doubt a club legend, I don’t believe he is anywhere even close to the level required to perform week-in-week-out like he used to.
If Chelsea become too reliant on Costa, they run the risk of falling short in the goals department and will inevitably pile more pressure on players such as Oscar and Eden Hazard.
Fabregas laughed off claims earlier this week that this Chelsea side are similar to Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ side, which shows that the players aren’t thinking about it. I think the first port of call is winning the Premier League title, however, the Arsenal side of 2003 had only won six and drawn two after eight games – food for thought.
If Chelsea do manage to go undefeated, it will be an amazing accomplishment for the side. However, I believe Mourinho will be more interested in securing ‘champion’ status before he even thinks about the prospect of going undefeated – it certainly won’t be the first thing on his mind so early in the season.
If Chelsea have yet to lose as we enter 2015, then people will really start to talk.