Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Slick Blues Show They Have Class to Win Title

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Slick Blues Show They Have Class to Win Title

Article excerpt

Byline: KEN DYER

JUST when the bitterness between Arsenal and Manchester United looked to be subsiding, Chelsea today decided to turn the screw on their nearest rivals for the Premiership title.

While Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said that the defenders in Arsenal's 5-4 north London derby win over Tottenham must have been a "disgrace", his England midfielder Frank Lampard revealed that he and his team-mates have ignored what is happening to Arsene Wenger's team.

Arsenal stumbled back to the top of the table for a few hours on Saturday but Chelsea's convincing 4-1 west London derby victory over Fulham soon restored them to pole position.

It was a win which left the Chelsea camp in bullish mood and showing no early signs of the pressure which can sometimes inflict players and teams when they hit the top.

"Yes, I am even more confident now we can win the title," said Mourinho.

"That is not me being vain or arrogant. I just feel it to be the case."

And Lampard revealed the team made a conscious decision to ignore what their closest rivals were doing.

"We had a determination to beat Fulham irrespective of Arsenal's result," he said. "If they had lost we wanted to open a gap and although they won we are back above them.

"We wanted to block them out. We had a winning determination, a winning mentality that has built over the last few weeks and it showed against Fulham. Now we want to keep that attitude. We're looking forward now to every game."

Fulham manager Chris Coleman believes Chelsea can go on to win the title and says that Arjen Robben, their Dutch star, is world class.

"We were outclassed by Chelsea, it's as simple as that," said Coleman.

"They're the best team in the country at the moment, better than Arsenal, and Robben is one of the best players in the world. He was simply awesome."

Lampard also admits that Chelsea have stepped up a level since the flying Dutchman came into the side.

"He's offering us pace, skill, goals.

He's been a revelation and he and Damien Duff in the same team is a frightening prospect for anyone, particularly with Eidur Gudjohnsen in such good form as well, scoring the goals," said Lampard. …

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