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Feb 11, 2011

Ancelotti accepts Blues title hopes over

Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti is focused on ensuring his side finish the season in the top four, after writing off the Blues' hopes of retaining their Premier League crown.

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Ancelotti, 51, led Chelsea to a league and cup Double in his first campaign at Stamford Bridge, but has found life significantly more difficult this time around.

Despite a strong start to the season, the Blues have endured a torrid few months - seeing what was an eight-point lead over Manchester United in October, turn into a ten-point deficit at present.

And the former AC Milan coach admitted that talk of winning the Premier League title was now entering the realms of extreme optimism, with a Champions League berth now a more realistic aim for Chelsea.

"Now for us it is difficult to think that we can come back and fight for the Premier League title," Ancelotti said. "The gap is very big, we have to be honest.

"The most important thing is to reach fourth place in the table to maintain Chelsea in the Champions League and we have to fight with the other teams.

"It is better for us to take it game by game in the Premier League but we have to reach fourth place as a minimum."

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