Chelsea v Middlesborough: Chelsea's chance to take one giant step towards the Premier League title.

Tonight, Antonio Conte's Chelsea team can take a massive step towards the Premier League title with a victory over Middlesborough and...

Tonight, Antonio Conte's Chelsea team can take a massive step towards the Premier League title with a victory over Middlesborough and extending their lead at the top to seven points with three games to go. 

Tottenham's defeat to West Ham on Friday night as Tottenham headed into the game in good form in the League and a Manager who liked to re-iterate that his team was ready to win the league, to wait for Chelsea to make a mistake and that they would close the gap to a single point by the time we would have woken up on Saturday morning.

What we didn't expect was West Ham to deliver a performance that has been missing all season and for Tottenham to suffer one of those nights where nothing goes right for them. West Ham beat them by a single goal to (hopefully) put an end to their challenge. 

This means little if Chelsea do not perform and have the wrong mentality tonight which we all know is not acceptable under Conte. I expect his team to come out, treat the opposition with respect and to look to play at our maximum to get the job done as we have done so many times this year.

It's important to point out that the visitors are fighting for their lives this evening and a defeat would relegate them alongside Sunderland. They will come here ready to fight and to give absolutely everything to win the game so it's possibly a very dangerous game for us.

On paper and based on form Chelsea should win this easily and take a massive three points but with a couple of players potentially injured and struggling to be fit, it's important that Antonio Conte finds the right balance through the middle of midfield and in attacking areas.

On nights like this evening, I would play Cesc Fabregas next to N'Golo Kante (which granted, is hard on Matic) but with little attacking threat from midfield, Fabregas would find himself in pockets of space to look forward and unlock the opposition who will look to sit deep and remain compact.

Pedro's form has been excellent in addition to Willian so it's unfortunate that someone has to miss out. I believe the Manager (with Friday night at West Brom in mind) will go with Willian playing next to Diego Costa and Eden Hazard.

Chelsea must start well, move the ball quickly and hopefully get a goal in the first half to calm everything down. At that point the visitors will have little choice but to look to attack us and this is where holes/space appear which we can hopefully take advantage of.

This is a massive night for both teams for very different reasons. For Boro' it's imperative that they survive, for Chelsea it's one giant leap towards the title!


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