The Blues look well set to keep their place at the pinnacle of the Premier League table for the remainder of the season, and they were handed a massive boost by newly-promoted Burnley on Sunday.
Having only managed to draw with Southampton, Manchester City could have moved to within one point of the West Londoners with a victory over the Clarets, and, despite leading 2-0 at half-time, Sean Dyche’s side fought back to claim a point, and assuring Chelsea have a three-point gap on City heading into the New Year.
Despite the advantage over their rivals, the race for the title is far from over as many suggested weeks ago as Jose Mourinho’s side remained undefeated, and, although they enjoy a much easier second half of the season than City, there is no point claiming that the Blues will be celebrating their fourth Premier League win already - with half the campaign yet to go.
One man who agrees with this opinion is former Chelsea and Scotland international midfielder Craig Burley. The 43-year-old - who started his career at Stamford Bridge in 1989 before leaving for Celtic in 1997 - currently works as an analyst for ESPN, and he spoke after the Blues 1-1 draw at Southampton to claim that the Premier League is not a one-horse race.
“This is no way a one-horse race,” the 46-capped international said. “Chelsea have once again dropped points, this time at Southampton.”
Speaking about the game at St Mary’s Stadium, Burley felt as if, while Chelsea dominated play, they never truly threatened to take the full three points from the South Coast, and he reserved praise for the display put in by Ronald Koeman’s men.
He added: “In the second half Southampton did tire, they did get deeper, as Chelsea pushed and pushed - it was total domination.
“But, in truth, Fraser Forster in the goal didn’t really have too much to do as Chelsea threw the kitchen sink at Southampton.
“Koeman has done a wonderful job there keeping them going after a bump a couple of weeks ago, but, as for Chelsea, one or two looking on - particularly Manchester City - will see signs that this side can drop points, and may be there for the taking.”