herald

Tuesday 22 August 2017

we've won nothing yet: terry

John Terry is thrilled with Chelsea's fine start to the Premier League season, but insists it is just that - the beginning.

The Blues have taken a five-point lead over Manchester City into the international break after Sunday's 2-0 win over Arsenal, their sixth victory from seven games.

Manchester United are eight points behind, with the Gunners and Liverpool nine adrift.

With Jose Mourinho's history of claiming titles from the front, some are suggesting the Blues' position is ominous for the rest of the division, but 31 games still remain.

"Clearly it (the title race) is not over," Terry said.

"Other teams have been in this position. It's nice to have the lead but when you're at the top everyone wants to shoot you down.

GOOD THING

"That's the good thing about the Premier League and why everyone loves it.

"Teams are out to get us because we are at the top and playing well.

"The international break is here and we need to come back and maintain our form after that as well. It's very important we do that."

Chelsea are chasing a first Premier League title since 2010 - their only championship since two-time winner Mourinho's first spell ended in September 2007 - and Terry wants the Blues to ruthlessly exploit any slips by their rivals.

He added: "You're just hoping when you're at the top and have a five-point cushion and more on certain teams, a couple of them slip up again and that increases.

"If that happens, it's a lot of points to give up early on. All we can do is keep winning and wait for those teams to slip up."

Chelsea finished four points behind champions City last term, but in Diego Costa now have the "killer" striker Mourinho has craved.

The Spain striker netted his ninth Premier League goal on his seventh appearance, despite Mourinho insisting he is barely training as a result of a hamstring problem.

QUESTIONED

Terry questioned where talk of Costa's fitness travails arose, insisting the £32million summer signing from Atletico Madrid was causing him no end of problems in training.

"I'm not sure where that's coming from," Terry said.

"He isn't showing that in training. He looks sharp, he looks angry, he looks aggressive.

"He's fit and that's the main thing. Diego has been a nightmare for defenders. He popped up with another great finish."

A delightful pass from Cesc Fabregas set up Costa and the former Arsenal captain was praised by Terry.

"When it's quiet and tight like that you need someone to open up the defence," the Blues skipper added.

"He's not only shown it against Arsenal but from day one."

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