Mourinho on course to mastermind Premier League title once again
Premier League leaders Chelsea are now odds-on favourites at 5/6 to win their fifth top-flight title, but Jose Mourinho is still playing down his team’s chances.
“I would prefer to be in [Manchester] City’s position. They have three matches in hand. If they win them all, they are top,” the Portuguese manager said following his side’s 4-0 win over Tottenham.
“We don’t have control of our destiny – if we win all our matches then maybe we are not champions. If City win their games, they are champions.”
Perhaps Mourinho has not seen the league table or his upcoming fixtures yet, as any sane person who has looked at the statistics will surely not want to bet against the Blues.
Chelsea are sitting pretty at the top now by seven points, and although Liverpool and Arsenal (both level in the table) have a game in hand – while City have three and and are nine points off them – their end of season run-in looks by far the more straight forward.
Of their last nine fixtures, just a home battle at the Bridge with Arsenal (on March 22nd) and a potential six-pointer away to Liverpool (their third-last game of the season) represent challenging match-ups.
Title second-favourites City (7/4), who are fourth in the league, in John Terry’s own words “are the strongest side”, but until their recent surprise FA Cup quarter-final loss to Wigan, they were still challenging for all four competitions.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side still have four very tough away fixtures to come, against Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton, and it looks as if the Chilean will have to make do with just their Capital One Cup trophy. They also face a Champions League following their 2-0 first leg home defeat to Barcelona.
Liverpool are an outside shout at 6/1 to still win the Premier League, but they too have a difficult run-in with the likes of Man Utd away, and home games with Spurs, City and Chelsea all part of their last 10 league line-up.
Brendan Rodgers’ side, unlike the other three contenders, are not in any other competitions this season, so that could put them in good stead to add to their 18 top-flight titles and win for the first time since 1990.
Arsenal, despite being level on points with Liverpool, are now surprise 22/1 shouts for Premier League glory, so it could be a great opportunity to place a bet to those who strongly disagree with Coral.
The Gunners are in desperate need of silverware, having last won a trophy in 2005 FA Cup, but they could focus now on the FA Cup instead with all other big names knocked out. They are odds-on favourites to win the world’s oldest football knockout competition at 4/9.
Arsene Wenger’s league fixture list also looks very daunting, with four out of their next five games against Spurs (A), Chelsea (A), City (H), and Everton (A). If they can somehow come through that difficult spell, however, their last final five matches are certainly winnable.