The highly anticipated derby between first-place Manchester City and second-place Manchester United this weekend should have repercussions beyond just the two teams involved, with third-place Chelsea eager to close the gap. The Blues enter the weekend three points (and 10 goals) behind United and a whopping eleven points behind City, so while the order teams won’t be changing just yet, Chelsea do have an opportunity to make things a bit more interesting.
But as Vice-captain César Azpilicueta has warned, we first have to make sure we actually take advantage of the opportunity by winning at West Ham.
"The two teams can't both take three points, so every time you get an opportunity to get close, you have to take it. We have to be intelligent to look at ourselves and then we'll see how the opponents will react."
Although Chelsea's schedule remains hectic, especially when compared to last season's, we do have a several “easier” matches ahead of us, which should translate into a prime opportunity to keep pace and potentially even catch-up with the teams ahead of us. As long as we keep winning of course like we’ve been doing in 7 of the last 8 games in the Premier League.
"The only target we have is to keep winning points and not drop any. We have to go game by game in this busy period in December - every three days you are fighting for a big three points."
"We have to look at ourselves. In the last few months you can look at where the opponents are until then we can only look at ourselves. We will then see where we are in the final weeks of the season, where we could fight for it."
-César Azpilicueta; Source: Sky Sports
We probably should be rooting for a draw or perhaps even a win for United and José Mourinho to halt City’s progress. Guardiola’s men are actually on the verge of breaking Chelsea’s record of winning 13 in a row from last season, so there’s another good reason for them to fail on Sunday.
But first! West Ham away.