Chelsea beats Leicester 3-1, a win away from league title
Chelsea rallied to beat Leicester 3-1 on Wednesday to move within three points of winning the Premier League.
Jose Mourinho’s side holds a 13-point lead and can wrap up its first league title in five years by beating Crystal Palace at home on Sunday.
Marc Albrighton’s goal in first-half injury time raised relegation-threatened Leicester’s hopes of a fifth straight win, and it sparked visiting Chelsea into life.
Veteran striker Didier Drogba tied it in the 48th minute with his first goal in 20 games, captain John Terry made it 2-1 in the 79th and Ramires slammed in the third 4 minutes later.
“Almost there,” Terry said. “We’ve been the best side all season ... the players and manager deserve a lot of respect, we’ve been great all year.”
Chelsea is unbeaten since Jan. 1 and has only lost twice in the league all season.
“I think it is phenomenal what they are doing,” said Mourinho, who has batted away suggestions in recent days that his team is boring. “Top of the league since Day 1 — it’s not easy.”
Chelsea has four games left to secure a second trophy of the season, having already won the League Cup. But Terry said the team was keen to do it in front of its own fans on Sunday.
“It will be nice to do it then,” he said.
In Spain, James Rodriguez scored a stunning goal to lead Real Madrid to a 3-0 home victory over Almeria that kept his side two points behind leader Barcelona in the final stretch of the Spanish league race.
Rodriguez snapped Madrid out of its lethargic first-half performance by volleying home a long-range strike seconds before the break at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.
Almeria defender Mauro Dos Santos deflected a pass meant for Cristiano Ronaldo into his own goal in the 49th, and defender Alvaro Arbeloa sealed the win off Javier Hernandez’s pass with 6 minutes left.
With four rounds left, Madrid faces a tough visit at Sevilla on Saturday, while Barcelona plays at last-place Cordoba. Then both title rivals will turn to first-leg semifinals in the Champions League when Madrid visits Juventus and Barcelona hosts Bayern Munich next week.
“We are now in a very important period of the season, and each game is important,” Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said. “I will field the best lineup I can at Sevilla, even though we will then play at Juventus because it will be the match that matters the most.”