It’s very difficult to see past Chelsea for the Premier League title right now.
The Blues made it 11 wins in a row with Saturday’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace, and with Liverpool, Arsenal, and Manchester City all looking somewhat erratic, Antonio Conte’s men are now firm favourites to lift the trophy in May.
However, while this would be Conte’s first title in English football, there are plenty of people at the club who know exactly what it takes.
Chelsea have won it four times in the modern era, and legend Frank Lampard believes they’re in a good position to make it five.
“I don’t like to tempt fate but I can’t see anyone who has got the consistency to close the gap, so I fancy Chelsea strongly now,” he told Sky Sports.
Yet, as Lampard was quick to point out, it’s far from a foregone conclusion, and he thinks there are still three teams who can stop Chelsea.
When asked to name their main rivals, he said:
“City are in a decent position.
“And there are teams with quality for sure – City, I think Liverpool are very good to watch this year, and Arsenal.
“I think those will be the group chasing but with Chelsea, when you take that kind of a gap into Christmas, I think barring suspensions or injuries to top players like [Eden] Hazard and [Diego] Costa, I fancy them to carry it through.”
That’s not including Tottenham and Manchester United either, both of whom can’t be ruled out entirely.
Chelsea have a mixed record against the big teams this season, having lost to Liverpool and Arsenal in September before beating Manchester United 4-0 and easing to a 3-1 over Manchester City at the Etihad.