Chelsea’s shock loss opens up top 4 battle again – Talk Chelsea

Oh Chelsea. They do like to make things difficult for themselves.

Every time they look to be building a lead over those teams chasing them for a Champions League place, they slip up unexpectedly and allow their pursuers fresh hope.

This time, after a weekend where Arsenal and Spurs lost and Manchester United were thrashed, the Blues had the perfect chance to break away once and for all.

Last night they faced the Gunners, fresh from 3 defeats on the spin and just begging to have their season buried at Stamford Bridge. Any new betting sites in the UK would have had Thomas Tuchel’s team as favourites at home, a week after going to Madrid and beating Real.

But in the end the game was a horrific series of calamitous defensive errors (and another Romelu Lukaku stinker), and Arsenal somehow pulled off a 4-2 win. That brings Chelsea right back into the mix, with the Blues now just 5 points ahead of both North London clubs.

We do still have a game in hand – but our fixtures aren’t the easiest, and if we continue to play in such an inconsistent way, the battle is sure to go to the end of the season.

This Sunday we play West Ham, who beat us earlier this season and look like a really serious outfit this season. Our only hope is that they’re distracted by their Europa League efforts.

After that comes Manchester United – struggling but still dangerous considering the talent they have, especially at Old Trafford.

Then a fascinating game against Frank Lampard’s Everton side who fighting to survive – played at a rabid Goodison Park.

That run of 3 games alone is pretty nasty, and it’s not inconceivable we lose all 3. If we do drop points and Spurs and Arsenal keep winning, we’re going to be in a very sweaty situation going into the final weeks.

It will likely still be in our hands (unless things really do go horribly wrong), but those final 3 games are no pushover either – Wolves, Leicester and Leeds.

We’re still heavy favourites to get it done, but in reality we should be pushing for 1st, not fighting for fourth, and the way that the whole campaign has dropped off so suddenly is a real disappointment.

Still, at least with so many big games to play, there’s plenty of scope to earn some big wins and put a smile on everyone’s faces for the long summer ahead.

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