Chelsea winger Juan Mata believes victory over Premier League leaders Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on Monday night will put his club back in the title race.
The Blues have fallen ten points behind City following a spell of poor form but Andre Villas-Boas side have won their last two fixtures 3-0 – against Newcastle United and Valencia – and head into the match full of confidence.
A home victory against Roberto Mancini’s unbeaten side would go a long way to proving Chelsea are back on track and capable of challenging for top honours.
“If we win against City, we will have more confidence,” Mata said. “The Premier League does not finish for another six or seven months. Nothing is impossible.
“They have a big points difference, but I think it [winning the title] is not impossible.”
Mata, who has quickly become one of the most important players at Chelsea following his £23.5 million move from Valencia this summer, says that his team-mates are at ease heading into the high-profile clash.
“We do not have any fear of City, especially because we’re playing at home,” the Spaniard said. “We do have the ultimate respect for them because they’re the league leaders but fear? Not at all.”
Mata added that he was surprised how quickly he had adapted to his new home and suggested English and Spanish football were not as different as many believe.
“We are allowed to play like we are in Spain, with more possession, more passes, more assists, and here everything is normally different to that,” he said. “A lot of Spanish players have come here in the last few years and that is good for the Premier League, to have different styles of football.”
There is one major difference between the two countries, however, as Mata learnt when speaking to City star and former Valencia team-mate David Silva.
“He told me he was very happy there, in Manchester, with the culture of English football,” Mata said. “He told me the weather is not like the Canary Islands!”