Chelsea make one of worst starts to title defence in Premier League history

Last season's Premier League champions meet the 2014 winners this weekend but Jose Mourinho has played down the importance of the match

Chelsea have made the second-worst start to a title defence in Premier League history.

Jose Mourinho's side suffered a shock home defeat to Crystal Palace on Saturday – just their second Premier League loss at Stamford Bridge under the Portuguese manager.

That result leaves Chelsea with only four points from their first four games, after an opening day draw with Swansea, 3-0 reverse at title rivals Manchester City and 3-2 win at West Brom.

Only 1994/95 champions Blackburn got off to a worse start after winning the Premier League, taking just three points from their first four games of the following campaign.

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Gary Neville believes Chelsea’s players need a hard look at themselves after their performances in the Premier League so far this season

Chelsea's sluggish start is in stark contrast to their 2005/06 and 2010/11 seasons, where they took maximum points from the opening four matches of their title defence.

However, Manchester United, who managed just five points from four games in 2007/08 and 2008/09 before bouncing back to retain their crown, have shown that Chelsea shouldn't be written off just yet…

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