Chelsea: Four remaining fixtures - can they beat Liverpool and Manchester City to the Premier League title?
A look at the remaining league games facing Jose Mourinho's side
Jose Mourinho may have been down playing his side's chances this season, but Chelsea are just a few games away from possible Champions League and Premier League glory.
With four games of the domestic season remaining, there is one fixture that stands out in particular - that away to current table toppers Liverpool.
Yet there are three other Premier League games to come and none of them are simple.
Plus there is the small matter of a Champions League semi-final against Atletico Madrid to throw into the mix.
Here, we take a look at Chelsea's remaining Premier League games and assess where Mourinho's side might come unstuck, or indeed turn the title race in their favour...
v Sunderland (H) Saturday April 19, 5.30pm
The first of the remaining fixtures will see Chelsea entertain Sunderland. The game has been moved forward a day owing to Chelsea's involvement in the Champions League the Tuesday after this game. Facing the bottom team in the league would usually be viewed as the ideal fixture ahead of such a massive game as a European semi-final, however this might not be straight forward. Quite simply, Sunderland have to start winning if they are to survive and consequently are likely to throw everything at Chelsea. And oddly enough, the Blues have had a tendency to drop points in the more simple looking fixtures than the games against fellow top sides. The last time they met, Sunderland were the victors as they scored two late goals to win 2-1 in the Capital One Cup. An entertaining 4-3 result ended in Chelsea's favour in the league match at the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland celebrate during their Capital One Cup victory earlier this term
v Liverpool (A) Sunday April 27, 2.05pm
There's no getting away from it - this is the big one. Chelsea will be ruing how the fixture fell, with the game at Anfield being sandwiched between the two-legged Champions League semi-final against Atletico Madrid. But the Blues will be able to take comfort from their fantastic record against their title rivals this season. They beat Liverpool 2-1 at Stamford Bridge, beat Manchester City home and away, thundered six past Arsenal at Stamford Bridge and collected a point at the Emirates. Simply put, Mourinho knows what he's doing in the big matches. But will that extend to fortress Anfield? The victory over Manchester City showed just what great form the Reds are in right now - something backed up by the 30 points they've collect from a possible 30.
Brendan Rodgers, a former apprentice of Mourinho's, could deny his mentor another league title
v Norwich (H) Sunday May 4, 4pm
Chelsea will be looking back down to the other end of the table when they try to locate their next opponents in the league. Norwich will come to Stamford Bridge in all likelihood as desperate as Sunderland. While the Canaries might be hovering above the relegation places at the moment, defeat to in-form Fulham leaves them clinging to safety by their finger tips. With Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal the other sides Norwich have to play, they'll need some points from at least one of them to have a chance. Might that find them at Chelsea? They haven't beaten the Blues since 1994 and lost 3-1 when they played earlier this season.
Norwich City manager Neil Adams looks on at Craven Cottage
v Cardiff (A) Sunday May 11, 3pm
Chelsea might as well spend the final few weeks of the season at a singles bar for all the desperation they will be encountering. The final day of the 2013/14 campaign will see Chelsea go to the capital of Wales where they will meet yet another team battling for survival.
A win for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side in their most recent outing has given them hope and reduces the likelihood they'll already be relegated by the time this game comes round - which is not good news for Chelsea. When they played earlier this season Chelsea comfortably won 4-1. At least if Chelsea make it to the Champions League final, they should be capable of putting it to the back of their mind - the showpiece in Lisbon doesn't take place until May 24.
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