December 15, 2017 / 8:15 AM / a month ago

Courtois says Chelsea expect tough challenge from Saints

(Reuters) - Premier League champions Chelsea will not underestimate Southampton on Saturday as they aim to keep up the pressure on the sides around them in the top four, goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has said.

Soccer Football - Champions League - Chelsea Press Conference - Baku Olympic Stadium, Baku, Azerbaijan - November 21, 2017 Chelsea's Thibaut Courtois during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

Chelsea are third in the league, 14 points adrift of leaders Manchester City and three behind second-placed Manchester United after 17 games, and Courtois says the London side must continue winning to either chase down City or at least finish second.

“It’s a tough game, Southampton drew against Arsenal and it’s always difficult against them home or away,” Courtois told the club’s website. (www.chelseafc.com)

”We have to be careful because these are the games we have to win if we want to stay near the top and try to close the gap on Man City. Obviously we are far away but we want to keep on pushing and if we can’t catch them, we want to finish second.

“It was very good that we showed from the start we wanted to win against Huddersfield and that’s the mentality we need in every game.”

Chelsea beat promoted Huddersfield Town 3-1 on Tuesday to maintain a four-point gap above Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and Burnley with seventh-placed Arsenal a further point behind.

Southampton are 11th in the standings and winless in their last four league games.

Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru

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