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Mar 7, 2014

Jose plays down 'title favourites' tag

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho expects a tough match against Tottenham on Saturday and speaks about Alan Pardew's headbutt punishment.

Jose Mourinho is still refusing to describe Chelsea as favourites in the Premier League title race, and claimed the fact they are now four points clear as “not a realistic situation.”

• 50-50 challenge: Chelsea vs. Tottenham
• Sherwood confident in Spurs' ability

With Arsenal and Manchester City playing in the FA Cup this weekend, Chelsea have the chance to go seven points clear as they host a Tottenham team that have not won at Stamford Bridge since 1990. That has led to many bookmakers placing Mourinho’s side as favourites for the title, but the Portuguese disputed that status.

“No,” Mourinho said when asked about his side's standing. “I just say we have to try and win our next match. It doesn't matter the opponent, the competition, the stadium. We just try and win. There's nothing hidden. We try and win the game. That's the objective.

“I keep saying [our points lead] is not a realistic situation. Realistically is when teams have played the same number of matches, so you can say properly if you're in front or behind. When some teams have played more matches than others, the situation is not real. I don't look at the table, I look at the game.”

Mourinho also stated it is not something being discussed within the squad.

“They are talking about trying to win tomorrow,” he added. “Nothing else.”

The Chelsea boss meanwhile confirmed that Eden Hazard is fit to play after the international break, but that Ashley Cole will be missing with a lateral ligament injury.

“Hazard is good,” he said. “We have some other problems that we won't know whether they will recover, but Hazard looks good. No problems.

“It was good for me that Ashley played part of the [England vs. Denmark] game. He's not been playing here for a long time. He played 45 minutes, and for me that's good. But unfortunately he got an injury in training [on Thursday] and is one of the players who is out. A lateral ligament, a little thing, but impossible for [Saturday] and between eight and 10 days.”

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