Sunday, August 20, 2017

Hope alive for Chelsea

SoccerNews in English Premier League 21 Apr 2011

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Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti has not conceded this season’s Premier League title after his side beat Birmingham 3-1 on Wednesday.

The victory lifted Chelsea to second on the table, six points behind Manchester United and with the leaders still to play Ancelotti’s side and Arsenal, their faint hopes of retaining their Premier League crown are still alive.

A Florent Malouda double and a goal from Salomon Kalou gave Chelsea the victory at Stamford Bridge, one which had Ancelotti contemplating their run home.

“To win the title we’ll need less points than last season,” Ancelotti said.

“We won it with 86 last season. Now, with 80 points, United can win the title. They need 10 points.”

“We are happy tonight because we’ve reached second place. We await to see what happens in the next five games.”

Ancelotti won’t be ruling his side out of the title race right until the final match of the season, when his side travel to seventh-placed Everton.

“In football, I learned that everything can happen in the game right up to the final whistle,” he said.

“You can win the title in the last minute and you can lose the title in the last minute. If we thought that one month ago we’d have a little chance to come back to fight for the title, I think that everyone could have said we were crazy.”

“Our aim is to try and win every game. After that, we can see our results and our position in the table.”

“Six points (gap) at this stage with five games to go will not be easy, but we don’t have to think we can or can’t do this.”

Ancelotti also hailed Didier Drogba after his terrific performance, with the Ivorian providing two assists and looking far more deadly than his fellow striker, Fernando Torres, who started on the bench before making a brief appearance as a substitute.

Birmingham manager Alex McLeish was disappointed with his side’s slow start to the match, conceding two goals in the opening half-hour.

“Shocking start,” McLeish said.

“We did the same thing here last season and gave ourselves a mountain to climb. But we hung in there and never gave up.”

Birmingham are only five points above the relegation zone with five games remaining and McLeish has set his side a target for survival.

“I would say we need another win,” he said. “We’ll try and get as many points in the last five games as we can.”

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