Mourinho plays down Chelsea’s seven-point lead

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is not getting carried away despite seeing his side extend their lead at the top of the Premier League to seven points with a 2-1 victory at Aston Villa, writes BBC Sport.

The title hopefuls took the lead inside eight minutes when a neat passing move resulted in Eden Hazard firing a first-time shot past Brad Guzan. The hosts responded well, however, and found an equaliser shortly after half time when Jores Okore headed down and in from Carles Gil’s pinpoint cross.

Despite suffering the disappointment of being the first side to concede a goal to Villa in the Premier League since December 20, Chelsea – who were not at their best – went on to win thanks to an exquisite volley from Branislav Ivanovic with his weaker left foot.

That win, along with Manchester City’s disappointing 1-1 draw at home to struggling Hull City, was enough to ensure that the Blues stretched their lead at the summit, but Mourinho insists the gap between first and second is not unassailable. He said: “In another country, I would say it is fantastic. In this country, I would say it is nothing.

“There are 14 games to go and 42 points still to play for. Every game is difficult, and anything can happen. “We have to focus on ourselves. This was a very important victory. Now let’s try to win the next game and, if we do that, we have a seven-point lead with 13 games to go.”

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