Football Features

The one way Chelsea have actually dominated in the Premier League this season

By Harry Edwards

Published: 11:32, 1 March 2024

Chelsea are struggling again in the Premier League.

The arrival of Mauricio Pochettino in the summer was meant to herald in a new era at Stamford Bridge. A manager known for his work in bringing through younger players, Pochettino was the best man to deal with Chelsea this season. The Blues have spent a lot of money over the past year or so, stacking their squad with younger players, including four signings for over £40m in the summer.

But, going into their 26th Premier League game of the season, Chelsea are in the bottom half of the table. They ended last season 12th, their lowest league finish since 1993/94 when they were 14th. However, it was the Blues’ lowest points return of the Premier League era, collecting just 44 in total.

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Sitting 11th currently, Chelsea have lost as many Premier League games as they have won this season, recording 10 for both. Some of the defeats have been humiliating too, losing to Nottingham Forest and Wolves at home, as well as a 4-1 defeat to Liverpool away in which they were torn apart.

There have been some moments of positivity, with Chelsea going unbeaten in their two games against Manchester City, as well as a three-match winning streak in the Premier League either side of the New Year. Of course, away from the Premier League, Chelsea reached the EFL Cup final — losing to Liverpool after extra-time — and making it to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup where they will face Leicester.

But overall, there has been a lot of pressure on Pochettino and unhappiness amongst the fans. Some are still calling for Pochettino to be sacked, whether that be now or at the end of the season. And you can see where they are coming from, given the lack of progress on the pitch and inspiration off it.

European qualification through the league is unlikely, but Chelsea will keep pushing until it’s no longer mathematically possible. The Blues face Brentford this weekend in a London derby at the Gtech Community Stadium, and there may be some reason to be optimistic.

Although Chelsea lost to Brentford at home earlier this season, the Blues boast the best record in Premier League derbies in 2023/24 so far. There was also a lost to West Ham at the start of the season, but aside from that, Chelsea have won five and drawn one of their eight derbies.

The draw came against Arsenal, and saw Chelsea lose a 2-0 lead to have to settle for a point at home — that result coming as part of a good period for the Blues.

Chelsea have beaten Fulham and Crystal Palace home and away, on top of their 4-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur in what was a frankly bizarre game. The Blues have won each of their last four Premier League London derbies, as many as they had in their previous 16. And they’ll now be searching for five league London derbies in a row for the first time since May 2021.

Second to Chelsea in the London derby mini-league is Arsenal, who have amassed 15 points from their total nine games. The Gunners have won four, drawn three and lost two, beaten by Fulham and West Ham back-to-back at the end of 2023.

West Ham jumped up the table to third after their 4-2 win over Brentford on Monday, with the Bees taking 11 points from their nine London derbies so far. They are level on points with Tottenham, but Ange Postecoglou’s side have only played seven derbies — the fewest so far this season.

Fulham and Crystal Palace are the bottom two clubs, with the Eagles managing one win over Brentford and three draws.