Chelsea's chance to pull away
Posted 29th January 2010
Chelsea's lead at the top of the Premier League table is slight. They are one point ahead of Manchester United and two clear of Arsenal, albeit with a game in hand. The title race seemingly set to go to the wire. The Blues have a chance over the coming weeks to make sure it doesn't.
They travel to Burnley this weekend in the knowledge that at least one of their main rivals will drop points from their showdown on Sunday. If they win their game in hand against Hull City on Tuesday they could be as many as six points clear, a notable advantage in this competitive title race. Indeed, Chelsea's Premier League odds make them firm favourites.
Carlo Ancelotti's men have the chance to take a decisive stranglehold of the battle for the trophy when they host Arsenal. A repeat of their stunning win at the Emirates Stadium earlier in the season will have their supporters looking ahead to a first league title since 2005/06.
If Chelsea supporters really want to get carried away with looking at forthcoming fixtures, they might consider February 10th as the key date in the bid to reclaim the title. They travel to Everton on the same night Arsenal and Manchester United face Liverpool and Aston Villa respectively.
It is a dangerous game to plan ahead to predict points, especially in this season of surprises - Chelsea's superb start to the season was ended by surprise defeats at Wigan and Villa and they have suffered disappointing draws recently when they had a n opportunity to capitalise on United's inconsistency.
However, since drawing 0-0 at Birmingham on Boxing Day - the only time they have failed to score in the league this season - they have discovered their best form and are certainly playing well enough to take advantage of a run of fixtures that could go some way to securing the title.
Meanwhile, a number of early trial races for this year's Grand National will take place over the weekend and this should attract the attention of pundits.