Out-of-sorts Liverpool could be forgiven for fearing a valedictory thrashing when they visit 2014/15 Premier League champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Luckily the history books suggest that even a man of Jose Mourinho’s potent managerial powers has usually been incapable of maintaining a relentless winning mentality in his sides in the wake of past title wins.
Chelsea are evens to defeat the Reds, but the 12/5 about a draw, or indeed the 29/10 on a Liverpool win should be considered if the annals are anything to go buy.
Just once in Mourinho’s seven league title-winning campaigns, across Portugal, England, Italy and Spain, have his charges gone on to win all the games remaining after they’d landed the prize.
That was at Real Madrid in 2011/12, when Granada and Mallorca were dispensed with to follow up the 3-0 win over Athletic Bilbao that confirmed their achievement.
On every occasion prior to that in which the championship was won with games to spare, points have been dropped.
Losses were sustained in all bar one of the five title-winning campaigns previous to his Barcelona-breaking Santiago Bernabeu spell, with not one, but two defeats following the securing of his second Premier League crown at Chelsea in 2006.
Hearteningly for Liverpool the Blues were hardly bested by opponents in stellar effect in the latter example either, with a Titus Bramble winner responsible for their downfall at St James’ Park.
Back to the here and now and Chelsea have failed to best any of their last 10 visitors to Stamford Bridge by more than a single goal.
Given six of their last seven meetings with Liverpool have been decided by a single-strike margin or drawn, another tight encounter seems virtually assured.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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