The reigning English champions take on Everton at Goodison Park for the early 12.45pm kick off on Saturday, and there is no denying that such is Manchester City‘s gap at the top of the table, the Blues need three points.
And this is exactly what Merson believes.
In his column for the Daily Star, he wrote ‘Chelsea have a nightmare game today and another defeat could virtually end their title chances.
‘They can’t afford to lose another game after such a bad start.
‘They’ve given Manchester City an eight-point lead as it is.’
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He also noted that Everton could be much stronger than their opponents, drawing upon the lengthy travel the majority of Mourinho’s men will have had to endure on international duty.
All signs point towards what Merson describes as ‘a recipe for disaster’.
‘But Everton will definitely fancy their chances, because it’s a lunchtime kick-off at their place and it comes straight after the international break.
‘Jose Mourinho will have had little time to train his team – and they will be tired from playing and travelling.
‘Most of Everton’s players got a rest.
‘Lukaku, Jagielka, Mirallas, Stones – they didn’t play every minute of both games for their national teams.
‘Add to that the fact most of Chelsea’s players are not playing very well and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.’
The Citizens are currently eight points ahead of 13th place Chelsea, having comfortably won all four of their first league fixtures, while last season’s winners have managed just one victory.
In their title winning campaign, it wasn’t until December that Jose Mourinho’s side suffered their first loss, summing up how worrying their form is at present.