Jamie Carragher has warned Manchester City and Liverpool not to ‘write off’ Chelsea and says Maurizio Sarri’s side can challenge for the Premier League title.
Chelsea finished outside of the top four under Antonio Conte last season but look revitalised under new manager Sarri.
The Blues are yet to lose in the Premier League, winning five of their seven fixtures to climb to third, behind only Man City and Liverpool.
Carragher says reigning champions City and his former club Liverpool are the favourites for the title but says Chelsea should not be discounted.
‘I wouldn’t write off Chelsea,’ he told Sky Sports. ‘They have a great habit of winning trophies, certainly early in a new manager’s reign.
‘Spurs as well, after a bit of a wobble, are only four points off the top.
‘But I think it will be difficult for Spurs to challenge for the title with their squad depth and how many players went to the World Cup but I wouldn’t write off Chelsea with Eden Hazard in the form he’s in.
‘But Klopp has been there a lot longer than Sarri and Pep’s into his third season also – and both sides are looking the real deal at this early stage – you would say it would be between these two, with City being big favourites.
Former Liverpool and England defender Carragher added: ‘I don’t think anyone would deny that considering what they did last season.
‘I think they are the best team but that doesn’t mean Liverpool can’t find a way of overcoming them in a one-off game and taking the title if City went on a huge run in the Champions League, Carabao Cup and FA Cup.
‘Injuries too – these are the things where you need a little bit of luck to go your way. I think these are the front two with Chelsea very close behind in the early stages.’
Chelsea maintained their impressive run with a 1-0 victory in the Europa League against Hungarian champions Vidi on Thursday night.
Alvaro Morata, who has endured a poor start to the season, scored the only goal of the game and Sarri said it was important for the Spaniard to rediscover his scoring boots.
‘It’s very important for him to score,’ Sarri said. ‘He played a very good match. I think Alvaro can restart from this performance.
‘If after a goal he wants to cry, I hope to see him cry very often.’