first_img0Shares0000SUNDERLAND, November 28- Jose Mourinho will attempt to overturn a landmark defeat when Premier League leaders Chelsea visit Sunderland this weekend.The last time the two clubs met was in April when Gus Poyet’s Sunderland’s side –- then rooted at the foot of the table — pulled off a shock win at Stamford Bridge. Defeat brought an end to Mourinho’s 77-game unbeaten home league run in two spells as Chelsea manager and helped derail the Blues title bid.Mourinho’s side have not lost in the league since and last weekend’s one-sided dismissal of West Bromwich Albion helped extend the club’s lead at the head of the Premier League to six points after just 12 games.The 5-0 victory at Schalke in midweek confirmed Chelsea’s place in the knockout stage of the Champions League and extended the Blues’ unbeaten start to the season to 19 games in all competitions.A demanding schedule between now and the turn of the year will test Mourinho’s squad, but with their main rivals regularly dropping points, it is hard to see their commanding lead being whittled away in the foreseeable future.Unlike other leading Premier League clubs, Chelsea have managed to negotiate the opening months of the campaign without losing key players to long-term injury.And defender Branislav Ivanovic said: “We are playing as a team at the moment. It’s still an early stage of the year and we know how many games we have to play until the end of the season to win trophies. We have games every three days now.“At the moment we are very calm and everyone is thinking in the same direction,” he added.Cesc Fabregas had a hand in four of the goals that crushed Schalke and the Spain midfielder said he was playing the best football of his career following his close season switch from Barcelona.“I am playing next to great players and they are playing very well and are helping me,” the former Arsenal playmaker said. “We have a young, talented team and the mood at the training ground is great.”– Great escape –Connor Wickham scored in Sunderland’s 2-1 win in west London seven months ago that helped them pull off their escape from relegation, and the former England Under-21 international insisted another surprise result shouldn’t be ruled out.Poyet’s mid-table Black Cats face a tough run of fixtures heading into December, with defending champions Manchester City following the leaders in visiting the Stadium of Light.“We know we can do it from our performances last year,” Wickham said. “We just need to play the way we have been playing, and hopefully it’ll happen again.“We had the same situation last season when we faced Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United in quick succession, but we managed to pull off something remarkable then.”Sunderland have lost just three times in the league this season. But seven draws leaves them too close to the relegation zone for comfort.Wickham added: “We’ve probably had too many draws which we could have won.”Former Chelsea midfielder Poyet is relishing his latest meeting with the Blues after helping the club lift the FA Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup during a successful four-year spell following his arrival at Stamford Bridge in 1997.The Sunderland head coach said: “I had a great time there, but my focus is fully on Sunderland. It will be nice to catch up with a few old friends, but as soon as the game kicks-off, I won’t see anything other than our red and white.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

first_img Eden Hazard and Cristiano Ronaldo 1 Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has said that Eden Hazard is a better player than current Ballon d’Or holder Cristiano Ronaldo.Mourinho, who managed his countryman for three years while at Real Madrid, said that last season, the Belgium international was superior to the Portuguese superstar.“Last season, yes,” the former Inter Milan boss said.“In spite of the fact that Ronaldo was fantastic. He was fantastic. He scored an incredible number of goals.“I am not saying he is not fantastic. I am just saying that, in my personal view, every football player in the world should understand that a team has to be in front and not titles.“I don’t like players or managers to win individual trophies without the team.”So is Hazard better that Ronaldo? talkSPORT looks at the stats.GoalscoringLast season Hazard scored 14 goals for Chelsea on the way to winning PFA Player of the Year and Football Writers’ Player of the Year.Ronaldo, on the other hand, was the most prolific player in Europe over the same period of time, netting 48 times – over three times more than Hazard. He also boasts a better shot conversion rate than the Belgian, a formidable 26.4 percent from 182 attempts to Hazards 25 percent from 56 attempts.In fact, if Ronaldo was a team he would have scored more goals than 13 of the Premier Leagues teams and only 25 less than Chelsea.  AssistsHazard managed nine assists for his teammates last season, the second most in the Chelsea team behind Cesc Fabregas who managed 18.However, despite his perception as a greedy and selfish player, Ronaldo eclipses the former Lille man again in this department, laying on 14 assists for his teammates. If you add in Ronaldo’s goals, that’s a direct involvement in a goal every 48 minutes by Portugal’s captain, compared to every 147 minutes by Hazard. TrophiesFinally, Hazard wins one.Chelsea’s no.10 claimed two winner’s medals to add to his individual award last term, triumphing in both the League Cup and the Premier League.Comparatively, the former Manchester United winger did not lift any trophies after winning the rather meaningless UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup. According to Jose Mourinho this is justification for Hazard being better than Ronaldo.Under this criteria however, the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Edinson Cavani are also better than Ronaldo – and Hazard – having won four trophies at Paris Saint-Germain last season.Even Thomas Vermaelen technically won three with Barcelona.ConclusionWinning trophies makes for a successful career but it seems a bit premature to say it is enough to make you better than the Real Madrid superstar.It is therefore nearly impossible to argue against the fact the top two players in the world remain Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, while Hazard can battle it out with Luis Suarez, Neymar, Gareth Bale, Ibrahimovic and co. over who is the best of the rest.last_img read more