The Chelsea fans in the Transfer Tavern were pleased to see their side return to winning ways against Huddersfield on Tuesday night.
Despite the fact that Manchester City have stormed into a comprehensive lead in the Premier League, the Chelsea fans propping up the bar in the Tavern are refusing to give up hope of retaining their title this season. After suffering a shock defeat away at West Ham United on Saturday lunchtime, The Blues bounced back with a 3-1 win over Huddersfield to close the gap on Guardiola’s scintillating City to 14 points.
Although Antonio Conte will be keen to ensure his side retain belief that a dramatic turnaround is still possible this season, he will need to be realistic and accept that securing a place in the top-four ahead of the likes of United, Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool should be the immediate priority for Chelsea.
Chelsea are undoubtedly the dominant club in the capital right now despite their calamitous campaign in the 2015/16 season, and they should finish ahead of their London rivals this season.
However, if the odds at Skybet concerning the future of Riyad Mahrez are anything to go by, Chelsea could be at risk of allowing Arsenal to close the gap in quality between the two sides this January.
As things stand, Arsenal are the 5/2 favourites to land Leicester’s Algerian ace in the mid-season window, whilst Chelsea are second-favourites with 9/1 the price currently on offer for a switch to Stamford Bridge.
Mahrez’s performances for Leicester in recent years have been more than enough to justify a switch to one of the Premier League’s top clubs, and his decision between Arsenal and Chelsea could serve to shift the balance of power in London.
Considering the future’s of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez will inevitably be pursued away from The Emirates, it is crucial that Wenger lands Mahrez in January to begin replacing the immense quality they are set to lose.
But the fact that quality players could well be on their way out of Arsenal suggests that Mahrez should dismiss interest from the Gunners and look no further than Chelsea, or even Tottenham, who are only 10/1 to sign Mahrez.
Unless Mahrez has genuine assurances that Ozil and Sanchez will remain at the club beyond the end of this season, the imperious winger should reject the advances of Arsenal in favour of a switch to Stamford Bridge.
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