After seeing his side clinch a 3-1 win away at Norwich before the international break, Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho declared himself “happy” with the league position of his side.
The Blues sit third, just two points behind joint-leaders Arsenal and Liverpool, and Mourinho said “The players go on international duty and it’s important we’re near the top, where we need to be.”
Change of style – but no goals?
There were growing concerns in September, when Chelsea suffered a shock home defeat to Swiss side Basel in the Champions League, and subsequently making it the worst start to a season since owner Roman Abramovich bought the club in 2003.
Mourinho subsequently put the poor run down to a ‘change of tactics‘, as he said: “I don’t like the way Chelsea were playing in the last couple of years. The club doesn’t like it and we want to change. When you want to build something different and the players are adapted and comfortable – it’s more difficult.”
The 50 year old also stated that his team need to score more goals, and with the goal-shy Fernando Torres, Demba Ba and Samuel Eto’o combining for just one goal in all competitions this season – Torres’ goal against League One side Swindon in the Capital One Cup – there must be a part of Mourinho that regrets loaning Romelu Lukaku out to Everton, where the Belgian youngster can’t stop scoring.
Only a Mata of time
Whilst the press were continually pointing towards Juan Mata’s absence as a key reason for Chelsea’s strikers failing to hit the net, Mourinho stuck to his guns and said the Spaniard needed to adapt if he was to feature under him. Now with the former Valencia playmaker back in Mourinho’s good books, Chelsea fans will hope that Torres, Ba and Eto’o find their scoring boots with the improved service from Mata.
Mourinho is right when he says that Chelsea are in a good position. Just two points off top spot despite the “worst start under Abramovich”, the Blues just need to keep touch with the leaders. Despite the strikers failing to find the net, they are finding goals from other sources, such as Brazilian midfielder Oscar and Belgian Eden Hazard, who form a devastating trio alongside Mata, and with these three now expected to hit the heights of last season, look for Chelsea to hit the goal trail once again.
Despite their great result at Carrow Road almost two weeks ago, the bookmakers have Chelsea drifting out to around 3/1 to win the Premier League, if you want to check this yourself here’s a places with all the info, betfair.com/sport, making them second favourites behind Manchester City, who are in the 2/1 region, but also have Mourinho’s men as the slight favourites to beat City when the two teams clash next weekend.