It may be early in the season still, but the Blues have come out with something special this year — an attacking mindset, a cohesive team, and a star player in possibly the form of his life in Eden Hazard.
All that adds up to create something that should be capable of beating any club they come up against. And, though it may not mean much yet, Chelsea now find themselves at the top of the league with favourites Manchester City, and last year’s winner Liverpool, after those teams met in a drab match last weekend that culminated in a draw.
Chelsea, on the other hand, put three unanswered goals past Southampton with a fantastic performance, and they just seem to be getting better and better as each match goes by. It’s surprising looking at premiership predictions from Betfair in light of all this.
While Chelsea’s odds to win outright aren’t bad (15/2), Man City and Liverpool have both been given much shorter odds, with 4/6 and 5/2, respectively.
But of course, odds aren’t everything and Chelsea will be looking back at their performance against Southampton with a lot of confidence and much to be happy about.
Perhaps the thing they can be most pleased about was the performance of Ross Barkley in the midfield, which won him high praise from the head coach Maurizio Sarri.
Not only did he set up The Blues’ first goal, beautifully put away by danger man Hazard, he also went on to score himself, becoming the first English Chelsea player to do so in the Premier League since a certain Frank Lampard did the same way back in December 2013.
Barkley’s performance prompted Sarri to say that the player will be an extremely significant asset to the England side. Hopefully, he’s right.
Ross Barkley is the first Englishman to both score and assist in a Premier League game for Chelsea since Frank Lampard in December 2013 vs Sunderland.
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) October 7, 2018
But in the meantime, Chelsea have so much more to be happy about. They’ll look forward to hosting the out of form Manchester United on October 20 and will be looking to repeat their performance against Southampton.
The only thing they may not want to emulate from that performance was a few defensive errors. There were times where they did not look as solid at the back as they should have been and they were lucky to watch a poor Danny Ings effort sail over the crossbar.
Equally, goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga showed some real promise, picking up the pieces and seems like the kind of player Chelsea will be able to rely on to get them out of sticky situations in the future.
Ultimately, it probably is too early to speculate as to whether Chelsea can win the league this year. What we can say though, is that they’ve shown great promise at the start of the season and their attacking play is both exciting and clinical.
Judging by their start, it shouldn’t be too much of a stretch to expect the boys in blue to fetch a top-four finish. Either way, what a season we have in store with three undefeated teams at the top of the table and a lot of talent on display at Stamford Bridge.