After an extremely impressive start to the season, Chelsea are currently unbeaten, with many wondering if they can manage to go the entire season without suffering a loss. Most recently, they dispatched a Spurs side that enjoyed several chances in the early stages of the game, but were ultimately outclassed by a far superior outfit
Chelsea are now playing attacking, free flowing football, the type rarely seen at all at Stamford Bridge as Jose Mourinho lamented the lack of top quality striker and relied upon strong defensive performances to snatch results. Now though times are changing; Mourinho has assembled a team of talented players and the balance between them all seems perfect. With Nemanja Matic acting as the anchor in the midfield players like Cesc Fabregas, Oscar and Eden Hazard are given the freedom they need to express themselves going forward.
Last season it felt like Hazard was the only focal point of the team, the only player in the team who could produce a moment of magic and win games by himself. Brazilian's Willian and Oscar were clearly focused on the World Cup and seeing out their defensive duties. However, now all three are playing towards the top of their games and they have benefited hugely from the arrival of Fabregas from Barcelona in the summer.
The Spaniard has brought calmness to the Chelsea midfield and whilst he may not offer the goal threat that recently departed Frank Lampard did, he can control games. He sees passes that others don’t, he isn’t afraid to try dangerous passes and nine times out of ten they come off, which has led to him registering the most assists in Europe's top 5 leagues.
Of course the added bonus of this is that teams are now focused on Fabregas and trying to stop him from playing those incisive passes and controlling the game. This allows Hazard the freedom to play how he wants to play. The Belgian has won an astonishing 66 take ons this season, more than any other player across Europe’s top five leagues. He is clearly loving playing football at the moment, like the rest of the Chelsea side.
Another joy of watching Chelsea play football is the way Branislav Ivanovic bombs forward from his position at right-back. The Serbian has a wonderful gung-ho style which has really developed over the past few years and at times his heat maps are closer to Hazard’s rather than his opposite full-back Cesar Azpilicueta, who certainly enjoys getting forward himself.
Although Arsenal and Manchester City are traditionally better teams to watch, this year Arsenal have suffered far too many injuries whilst the latter do not look as fluid as they did last year. Fans of other sides may not want to admit it but Chelsea are now the team to watch in the Premier League. Alexis Sanchez and Sergio Aguero are both brilliant players but as a team no-one can compete with Chelsea right now. Mourinho may not think that they can go the entire season unbeaten, it is a real possibility, and while all the team are performing the way they are right now, providing there is no sudden injury crisis, it should be Chelsea's aim. Certainly, I think that it is hard to make a case for anybody but Chelsea to win the league this year. It just remains to be seen how close the race is.