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Being top at Christmas bodes well for Chelsea

25 Dec 2016
Chelsea's Diego Costa celebrates

Recent history shows that being Premier League leaders on Christmas Day are important for May

If the form book holds true it all looks good for Antonio Conte’s Chelsea on Christmas Day.

This is because the team placed first in the Premier League on 25 December has gone on to win the Premier League six out of the past seasons.

It used to be that being Christmas no 1 was a curse, with only three teams going on to be crowned champions in the opening 12 seasons. But it has turned into a lucky charm. 

Manchester City, 2013/14 Premier League champions
Man City were the last team to claim the Premier League Trophy when not leading at Christmas, in the 2013/14 season

Manchester City were the last team to claim the title when not leading the table on Christmas Day, coming from third on 25 December 2013 and one of only three clubs to do, with Manchester United and Arsenal.

The better news for Chelsea is that the four times they have led the league on Christmas Day they have gone to be crowned champions.

Champions who were not no 1 at Christmas

SeasonTeamPos on 25 DecPts behind leader
1992/93Man Utd45
1995/96Man Utd210
1996/97Man Utd57
1997/98Arsenal613
1998/99Man Utd35
1999/00Man Utd22
2001/02Arsenal23
2002/03Man Utd34
2003/04Arsenal21
2007/08Man Utd21
2008/09Man Utd47
2013/14Man City31

 It is rare for Manchester United fans to look to Arsenal for encouragement but the Gunners are the team who have come from the lowest position on 25 December to win the title.

Arsene Wenger’s team were sixth on 25 December 1997, 13 points behind the leaders before taking the title.

This is the same position Jose Mourinho’s team find themselves this Christmas.

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