Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti has warned Sir Alex Ferguson that his side will pounce on any slip-ups as the Premier League title race heats up.
Leaders Manchester United are 10 points clear of Chelsea but Ancelotti admits his side are in a ‘dream position’ following their collapse late last year.
Chelsea won just twice in November and December and won only five out of 16 matches between November and February – but they remain in with a chance of retaining their title.
“Three months ago, around November and December, it would have been a dream to arrive in this situation,” Ancelotti said.
“I don’t know what we can do until the end of the season but we have a chance to fight and do our best.”
“We have a chance to fight for the title but it is not in our hands. We have a possibility if Manchester United lose some points – and we will be ready.”
“There is a good atmosphere in this team and I’m happy.”
Yossi Benayoun remains sidelined for Chelsea ahead of their trip to Stoke on Saturday. The midfielder has been out for most of the season with an Achilles injury although he did feature for Israel in their 2-0 win over Georgia in midweek.
But Ancelotti said: “He needs to train properly and improve his condition but in 10 days he will be ready to play.”
Chelsea have no other injury worries for the trip to the Britannia, with Fernando Torres expected to keep his place in attack despite not scoring in his first seven matches at the club.
“There are moments in your career when you don’t score. In my experience I had (Hernan) Crespo, (Andrey) Shevchenko and Inzaghi and there were times they couldn’t score,” he said.
“But it is important to not lose confidence. Torres played very well against Manchester City. He didn’t score but he played well – it doesn’t matter if he scores or not but I think he will soon.”
“The team put in a great performance against Manchester United and Manchester City – fortunately we didn’t need goals from the strikers but in April we may need them. I am sure they can score.”
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