The unstoppable blue machine of Chelsea has wracked up 12 successive Premier League wins but will they find 13 their unlucky number when they play host to Stoke this afternoon. If they clear this hurdle then they will then equal the record that was previously set by Arsenal over a decade ago.
And it Antonio Conte able to recall both Diego Costa and N’Golo Kante this Afternoon it makes the prospect of 13 wins in a row a very credible one. Both Costa and N’Kante missed out on Boxing Day through suspension but Chelsea didn’t miss a beat as they strolled to a 3-0 win at Stamford Bridge.
The question before the game was whether or not Costa would draft in Michuy Batshuayi to replace Costa but he decided against drafting in the £34m signing from Marseille and the Belgian who is still yet to make a Premier League start had to make do with a cameo at the end of the game once the points were wrapped up.
This well oiled machine brushed past Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth to keep their six point gap at the top of the table, with every win that they earn they are really turning up the screw on the rest of the Premier League. With Chelsea’s refusal to drop points right now every game becomes a must win for the chasing pack.
And if Chelsea can win Today then it will place even more pressure on both Liverpool and Manchester City as the face each other in the Evening kick off. At least one of those sides will drop points at Anfield and Chelsea may well even get further daylight on both sides should the game end in a draw.
Visitors Stoke know what it’s like to lose to a title chasing side after being well beaten at Anfield on Tuesday night. After going ahead against Liverpool through a Jonathan Walters header that is as good as it got with The Reds then going on to score 4 unanswered goals.
Such was the nature of the defeat that they actually slipped down a place in the table due to having a worse goal scored record than Bournemouth with them both on a goal difference minus eight. That means that Stoke have slipped to 13th in the table.
That defeat also meant that Stoke have failed to win any of their last 4 matches and they are going to find it difficult to put an end to that run this Afternoon. That said should they win and results go there way they could be back in the top half of the table such is the nature of that middle bracket of teams in the league right now.
But you would be hard pressed to find anyone who would bet against Chelsea right now and rightly so. They will go into this game as firm favourites not just to win but to go on and equal that league record of 13 successive wins which then sets them up nicely for a potential record breaking trip to White Hart Lane on January 4th. A home win for me.