Should Chelsea be considered title contenders?
Chelsea won 0-3 away at Southampton. The blues are now level with Manchester City and Liverpool on points at the top of the table with only goal difference separating them. Chelsea are the only English team not to lose a single match in any competition this season. That is even with balancing the Premier League and the Europa League, which is known to be hard.
Chelsea had a pretty dismal season last season and finished 5th in the league, 30 points behind winners Manchester City. Chelsea decided to part ways with their manager Antonio Conte and replace him with former Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri over the summer. No one thought that Chelsea would be battling for the title this season and thought that it would be a transition season. However, Chelsea look like a new team under Sarri, very well drilled in their new 4-3-3 formation. Sarri’s team have already scored 18 times this season in the Premier League, which is only bettered by Arsenal and Manchester city.
Chelsea’s midfield looks strong this season. The acquisition of Jorginho and Kovacic have been a great addition. Another player who has come into form this season is Ross Barkley. He was bought by Chelsea in January but struggled with injuries last season. After the win at St. Mary’s, Barkley told Sky Sports, that he wants to win the league this season: “We’re serious. A lot of the team have already achieved the success of winning the league and that’s a goal of mine. Our end goal is to win the league but we’re taking each month as it comes to reach our goals and at the moment we’re achieving them.”
However, one of the main reasons Chelsea are doing well this season is because of the form of Eden Hazard. At the age of 27 Hazard is just entering his peak. Every game he plays he looks dangerous and capable of creating some magic. Since the start of the season he has been directly involved in a goal every 58 minutes he has played. Even though the striking options at Chelsea have not been firing this season, they have Hazard on top form. The season is still young and many things could happen, however, if Chelsea continue like this, they will be fighting for the title come the end of the season.