French full-back Gael Clichy admitted Manchester City can learn lessons from Premier League champions-elect Chelsea’s ability to win at all costs.
Chelsea have been described as “boring” as they close to within two wins of the Premier League title under Jose Mourinho, who has defended the club’s style of play following Sunday’s dour goalless draw at Arsenal.
City – second in the standings and the only club to have scored more goals than Chelsea this season – are known for their attacking brand of football but Clichy conceded that may need to change if the Manchester side are to win ugly and close out matches in the future.
“People are saying Jose Mourinho plays defensive football and his team doesn’t like to attack,” said Clichy. “They’ve won a lot of games by one goal but at the end of the day you just look at the trophies.
“Sometimes in football you just need to be able to win games, even when you are not playing well.
“This season there have been times when we have lost games instead of maybe settling for a draw whereas Chelsea have made sure that if they don’t win their games, they don’t lose them either. And that has been the difference this year.
“The two games we played against them I think we played better than them, created more chances and had more possession but on each occasion we shared the points.”
Clichy added: “Our philosophy at this club is to play attractive football and score lots of goals but at the same time you have to give credit where it’s due and Chelsea have been the best team this season.
“If Chelsea needed five points to win the title and had to draw five games to be champions they would get those five draws and do it. Probably no other team in the league could do that. So they must be doing something right.”
City travel to Tottenham in Premier League action on Sunday.