Jack Wilshere admitted that Chelsea have the look of champions after the Premier League leaders beat Bournemouth 3-0 at Stamford Bridge on Boxing Day to extend their winning streak in the competition to 12 matches.
Bournemouth started brightly and Wilshere looked particularly dangerous, twice going close to beating Thibaut Courtois in the first half, but Pedro Rodriguez’s spectacular strike broke the deadlock on 24 minutes and Eden Hazard’s penalty shortly after half-time cemented Chelsea’s victory.
Pedro scored a late third as Chelsea ruthlessly punished Bournemouth on the counter-attack, and after the match Wilshere conceded that the Blues appear significantly stronger than their other Premier League title rivals.
“They look like champions at the minute,” Wilshere said of Chelsea. “For me at the moment they’re the best team in the league. There’s still a long way to go of course, you can’t say they’re definitely going to win the league, but at the minute they look like the strongest.
“They’ve found this new [3-4-3] formation that works for them. I’ve always thought it’s a tough place to come anyway. I’ve been here a few times with Arsenal and we’ve only won once but they’re more ruthless.
“They know what the job in hand is, they go out there and week in week out they change their game plan depending on who they are playing.
“I think that’s the sign of a top team. They’ve got a structure with [Nemanja] Matic and [Cesc] Fabregas holding in there and players like Hazard and Willian who were both different class, and they’ve got the freedom to roam across the pitch.
“They caused us problems and they’ve been causing most teams problems this year.”
Monday’s game saw Wilshere engage in a lively midfield battle with former Arsenal teammate Fabregas, who partnered Matic in Chelsea’s central midfield with N’Golo Kante suspended.
Wilshere revealed he enjoyed the experience of competing against a man he remains on good terms with.
“I played against him with Arsenal,” Wilshere said of Fabregas. “He was with me in the early stages of my career. When I first broke in he was someone I looked up to.
“He’s always been good to me, and I’ve kept in contact with him. He’s been a bit unlucky this season because he hasn’t had much game time. For me, when he’s played he’s been excellent.”
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