As we enter the summer with preseason matches underway, excitement is building for the start of the English Premier League season.
After an offseason in which Jose Mourinho returned to manage his former club and new signings Andre Schurrle, Marco van Ginkel and Mark Schwarzer (and possibly more) moved to West London, it's time to take a look at what is ahead for Chelsea.
After a relatively successful campaign in which the Blues finished third in the EPL and won their first Europa League trophy in club history, supporters around Stamford Bridge have raised their expectations for the upcoming season.
However, life in the league will not get any easier for the West Londoners, as clubs like Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Tottenham will all be in contention to crown themselves champions of England. Nevertheless, Chelsea, who last topped the table in 2010, has to be considered a favorite to lift the EPL trophy this season.
However, there will, of course, be obstacles along the way. Each team hits through their fair share of speed bumps throughout the course of a season, but the team that manages to suffer the least amount of setbacks manages to find themselves atop of the table in May.
Here's a look at five of the most important matches Chelsea will play on the journey to become champions of England once again.