Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho feels the Blues are title contenders this time.
Chelsea begin their season away to newly promoted Burnley and Mourinho can’t wait to get started.
‘For me, pre-season was very long, for some players it was very short, but for me and my staff it was very long,’ he said.
‘The holiday period was even bigger due to the World Cup. To be back to the real competition is a fantastic feeling. I never hide the fact I like real competition and to be so long without a proper match creates a feeling.
‘Because of so many years and so many experiences I’m not saying I’m nervous or I feel something special, I just feel happiness to be back in competition. Today I was in this room speaking about it with the players because they have exactly the same feeling.’
Mourinho must choose between veteran Petr Cech in goal or Thibaut Courtois, who is finally at his parent club after impressing while on loan with Atletico Madrid.
“With all respect to the fantastic goalkeepers around the world, I think Chelsea have two of the three best goalkeepers in the world,” he added. This is something unique.”
Chelsea had a busy summer and brought in some established faces which include the expensive signings of Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas as well as Filipe Luis. Mourinho feels that the summer additions have benefited Chelsea massively. However, he insisted that the road to the title will not be just a one or two horse race, but five or six teams will be in contention for the title.
“We bought some key players and we feel these players have brought the squad into another dimension,” he said.
“We are title contenders but if you are expecting me to say we are going to win the Premier League, I cannot say this. I have to respect this competition and in terms of country’s championships, this is the only one with more than two contenders. There are five or six.
“I want to win against Burnley – that is the first step. To win against Burnley will be very hard.”
Meanwhile Burnley boss Sean Dyche prefers to look at a very tough opening game against Chelsea from a different perspective.
“It’s a double edged sword really, I mean which teams do you get in the Premier League where you think that’s going to be an easy one?”, he said
“I don’t think there is such a thing and we’ve got to play them all at some point, the players and myself both know that.
For sure, it’s a tough challenge, they’ve got a fantastic manager, a fantastic club and a fantastic team as well as amazing power in the market.
“Having said that, there are no guarantees for anyone and Jose was open in saying last year that he felt it was one of the leagues that was more open than others. We’ll certainly be working hard to make sure it is!”