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Jose Mourinho: Arsenal are still in the Premier League title race

FOOTBALL By Mirror | March 16th 2015
Mourinho says Arsenal are rivals to Chelsea for Premier League title

Jose Mourinho has admitted his Chelsea side are now in a three-horse race for the title - with Arsenal coming up on the rails.

Mourinho's Blues failed to take full advantage of Manchester City’s slip-up at Burnley on Saturday by only drawing at home to Southampton on Sunday. But they did increase their over lead City to six points, with a match in hand.

And Mourinho is just as wary of the threat posed by Arsenal, who are a point further back after their fifth league win on the spin and eight in nine.

Contradicting remarks he had made right after the match questioning the Gunners' momentum, the Chelsea boss said: “Of course Arsenal are in the race.

“Our position is better than them, but both teams are in the race. It’s not easy. Every match is difficult. But we are there.

“If someone had told me in August that, at the end of March, we’d be six points in front with a match in hand, I’d have signed for that immediately.”

Diego Costa headed Chelsea in front with his first goal in eight games before Dusan Tadic levelled with a controversial penalty, awarded after ref Mike Dean ruled Nemanja Matic fouled Sadio Mane.

Tadic was also fortunate to get away with a first-half trip in the box on Branislav Ivanovic.

When he was told Sky Sports TV pundit Graeme Souness, who has been locked in a war of words with Mourinho since Chelsea’s midweek Champions League exit, claimed Dean made the correct call for Southampton’s penalty, the Special One said: “Graeme Souness says also that is more of a reason to criticise if a player asks for a yellow card than kicks someone in the chest.

“So my opinion is not important. What is important is Mr Mike Dean, and his decision was penalty, and his decision was no penalty on Ivanovic.”

Southampton boss Ronald Koeman said: “In my opinion, that was a penalty, yes. The referee did a great job.”

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