Chelsea take further control of EPL title race

Published Sunday, January 22, 2017 6:19 PM by Shane Barrow
Chelsea take further control of EPL title race

Chelsea could not have asked for a better weekend in English Premier League action. Almost every single result benefitted the Blues chase for the title. There is a real opportunity for Chelsea to run away and hide from their pursuers in the second half of the season.

Even before the matches on the weekend there was optimism and good vibes in North London as news that Diego Castro was ready to play nice.  The short rift between the star striker and club was solved and Diego was back in the good graces of Italian Manager Conte. Who knows when the next flare up comes, but it seems the lead man is ready for the spring run to the English Premier League title.

Then came the Saturday matches. As Chelsea patiently waited for their Sunday home game with lowly Hull City they watched result after result fall in their favor.  The early match saw bottom feeders Swansea go to Anfield and pull off the massive upset beating Liverpool 3-2. A huge three points dropped by the Reds.

Then they watched as Manchester United had to scramble to earn a draw at Stoke City thanks to a wonderful Wayne Rooney free kick in added time. The final match Saturday pitted Tottenham against Manchester City in a highly entertaining game.  The shoreline fell perfectly for Chelsea as the match finished all square 2-2.  So at the end of the day all four teams in the top six that had played, dropped points. A dream scenario.

The only chaser in the top six to actually grab a win on the weekend was Arsenal and it didn't come easily agitated The Emirates.  Visiting Burnley bunkered in and frustrated Arsenal for an hour before the home side broke through scoring on a corner kick. Then craziness in stoppage time as both teams scored penalties and Arsenal Wenger was sent to the stands. The important three points lifted Arsenal all the way up into 2nd place passing both Liverpool and Tottenham.

Sunday brought Hull City to Stamford Bridge and an opportunity to go a whopping eight points clear atop the EPL table.  A large lead at the halfway point. Diego Costa was back in the starting eleven and minnows Hull would offer little resistance.  However, Hull made a pretty good account of themselves. A very late first half Diego Costa goal was all the home team could manage until a late Cahill goal sealed the important win 2-0.

Chelsea and Arsenal clearly win the weekend with Chelsea taking another step towards the title. Manchester City, Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester United look destined to fight it out for the Champions League places.

Chelsea 55
Arsenal 47
Tottenham 46
Liverpool 45
Manchester City 43
Manchester United 41