Jose Mourinho Claims Chelsea Are 'Little Horse' in Premier League Title Race

Mark PattersonUK Staff WriterFebruary 4, 2014

Chelsea's manager Jose Mourinho smiles as he waits for the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium, Manchester, England, Monday, Feb. 3, 2014. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Jon Super/Associated Press

Jose Mourinho has been underselling his side's title credentials all season long, and was at it again after defeating Manchester City 1-0 at the Etihad Stadium.

The victory leaves Chelsea still behind City and league leaders Arsenal, but only two points separate the top three after 24 matches.

Asked about Chelsea's title hopes after the victory, the Portuguese said in his press conference:

The next pre-season, me and my players will say openly that we are mature, solid from day one and are candidates for the league. This season is about evolution... [The title race is...] Two horses and a little horse. A little horse who needs milk and to learn how to jump."

Manchester City's credentials are obvious—they won the league two seasons ago and invested significantly on new players in the summer.

But Chelsea have also not been shy of spending money, and Mourinho would be disingenuous to pretend otherwise. Despite the high-profile sales of Juan Mata and Kevin de Bruyne in January, he has bought in the likes of Willian, Nemanja Matic, Mohamed Salah, Andre Schurrle and Marco van Ginkel.

In addition, the likes of £50-million Fernando Torres, £ 20 million-plus playmakers Oscar and Eden Hazard were already on the books, as well as multiple champions John Terry, Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard and Petr Cech.

If his horse metaphor stands up, surely it is Arsenal who are the little horse, given they have not won the league since 2004, and have rarely been deep in the title race since. 

But then again, when have the facts ever stopped Mourinho from selling the angle he wants to sell?

Data via Soccerbase