Skip to main content

English Premier League: Chelsea back on top, Mourinho losing hope

By Gary Morley, CNN
April 6, 2014 -- Updated 2121 GMT (0521 HKT)
Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring Chelsea's opening goal in Saturday's 3-0 win at home to Stoke City.
Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring Chelsea's opening goal in Saturday's 3-0 win at home to Stoke City.
  • Jose Mourinho plays down Chelsea's chances of winning English title
  • Blues two points above third-placed Manchester City after Saturday's win
  • City have two games in hand following 4-1 win over Southampton
  • Liverpool can return to top of table with win at West Ham on Sunday

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- Chelsea returned to the top of the English Premier League on Saturday, but it gave manager Jose Mourinho little hope that his side can win the title.

The Portuguese, who was triumphant in the first two seasons of his first spell at the London club, remains adamant that Manchester City still hold the advantage.

Chelsea's 3-0 win over Stoke put Mourinho's team a point above Liverpool, who travel to West Ham on Sunday, with City another point back after a similarly comprehensive 4-1 victory against eighth-placed Southampton earlier Saturday.

Manuel Pellegrini's team, who have already won the English League Cup, have two games in hand on Chelsea.

"We have five matches to play in the Premier League and we have to try to win all five," said Mourinho, who returned to Stamford Bridge last year after leaving Real Madrid.

"We don't depend on ourselves and we never did. I was waiting for the moment where we could be top of the league and depend on ourselves and I was waiting for that moment to say, 'Yes, now, we are candidates because we depend on ourselves,' but that never happened.

"With Liverpool we have to play against them, so we have one match we have three points to discuss with them -- with Manchester City we do not play so they have their destiny in their hands and the only thing we can do is to continue to win matches."

Egypt winger Mohammed Salah gave Chelsea the lead in his first start since signing in January, then won a penalty from which Frank Lampard followed up his own saved attempt to net his 250th career goal. Brazil midfielder Willian wrapped up the win with 18 minutes left.

While Chelsea may still be involved in the Champions League, albeit nursing wounds after a 3-1 defeat away to Paris Saint-Germain in midweek, City's focus remains on a second domestic title in three seasons.

"We are enjoying a very good second round of fixtures where the results are much better than the first half," Pellegrini said after City moved six points clear of fourth-placed Arsenal.

"We've had four wins and one draw in our last five games -- maybe we had low performances in the month of February and at the start of March but I think that now the team has come back to its best performances."

Manchester United moved up to sixth place with a 4-0 win at Newcastle, but Tottenham could reclaim that position from the defending champion by beating bottom club Sunderland on Monday.

Former Chelsea star Juan Mata scored twice for United, who face Bayern Munich in the second leg of the Champions League quarterfinals on Wednesday, while Mexico striker Javier Hernandez and Adnan Januzaj also netted.

It lifted more pressure off manager David Moyes, who rested several key players following his team's 1-1 draw with European champions Bayern in the midweek home leg.

"The focus could only be on this game but you could see we've left a few players at home and not played a few players, and we are hoping they will be fit for Wednesday night's game at Bayern Munich," he said.

Fulham moved off the bottom of the table with a 2-1 win at Aston Villa, who were missing top scorer Christian Benteke due to an injury that rules the Belgium striker out of the World Cup.

West Brom grabbed a crucial 1-0 win at Norwich that put both clubs level, five points above the relegation zone.

Hull moved up to 12th with a 1-0 win over Swansea that left the Welsh team in a nervous position above the bottom five.

Crystal Palace moved up to 14th with a 3-0 win at second-bottom Cardiff.

Read: 'Schwein' - a headline too far?

Read: 10-man Bayern held by Man Utd

Read: Chelsea beaten by PSG

Part of complete coverage on
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1328 GMT (2128 HKT)
A picture taken on May 16, 2014 shows 15-year-old Norwegian footballer Martin Oedegaard of club Stroemsgodset IF cheering during a match in Drammen, Norway. Oedegaard is set to become Norways youngest player ever in the national football team.
He's just 15 and the world is seemingly already at his feet. Norway's Martin Odegaard is provoking huge media interest and the hungry attention of Europe's top clubs.
August 15, 2014 -- Updated 1151 GMT (1951 HKT)
Last season Jose Mourinho wrote off the title of hopes of his "little horse" -- but now he has a squad primed to dethrone Manchester City.
August 14, 2014 -- Updated 1858 GMT (0258 HKT)
Luis Suarez will have to wait until late October to make his competitive Barcelona debut his ban for biting an opponent was partially upheld.
August 14, 2014 -- Updated 1649 GMT (0049 HKT)
Can Louis van Gaal cut it at Manchester United? Will Bayern conquer all in Germany? Is this PSG's year to win the Champions League?
August 7, 2014 -- Updated 1012 GMT (1812 HKT)
It's been a difficult year for Barcelona on and off the pitch, and the signing of Luis Suarez has only increased the prospect of more controversy.
August 11, 2014 -- Updated 1435 GMT (2235 HKT)
Germany striker Miroslav Klose, who scored a total of 16 goals at four World Cup finals, has announced his retirement from international football.
July 31, 2014 -- Updated 1145 GMT (1945 HKT)
Cultural y Deportivo Leonesa line up in their tuxedo kit.
When celebrating an important anniversary, it's always good to look your best. At least that's theory for a Spanish football team's preseason tuxedo kit.
July 30, 2014 -- Updated 1103 GMT (1903 HKT)
While many top European clubs are targeting the U.S. market, French football is setting its sights on expanding into Asia -- with China playing a key role.
July 27, 2014 -- Updated 1229 GMT (2029 HKT)
Major League Soccer has snared another big name from England with former Chelsea star Frank Lampard committing his future to New York City FC.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 1656 GMT (0056 HKT)
Europe's top clubs have booked a summer holiday to the U.S. -- but this is business not pleasure as they look to cash in on the World Cup afterglow.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1828 GMT (0228 HKT)
Brazil's new coach Dunga won the World Cup as a player in 1994.
Former World Cup-winning captain Dunga is appointed coach of Brazil's national team for the second time, charged with restoring national pride.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
Colombia's World Cup star James Rodriguez continues Real Madrid's long tradition of signing "Galacticos."
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 1007 GMT (1807 HKT)
Germany's World Cup-winning captain Philipp Lahm has decided to go out at the top by announcing his retirement from international football.