CAHILL: MAINTAINING FORM
The Blues go into tomorrow's game at Newcastle United buoyed by a run of six consecutive victories, and Gary Cahill is confident we can round off what has been, up to now, a memorable week, in the perfect manner.
The week began in dramatic fashion, with a last-gasp goal securing the three points against Manchester City at Stamford Bridge, a result that was followed 48 hours later by a dominant performance at Arsenal in the Capital One Cup, with Jose Mourinho's side progressing courtesy of a 2-0 victory.
We return to Barclays Premier League action tomorrow lunchtime in the north east, where a win, with Arsenal taking on Liverpool in the evening kick-off, would see us top the table.
'Every game is important at the moment,' Cahill tells the official Chelsea website. 'It's another big one at the end of what's been a good week for us so far, with victories against two big teams.
'We're going into the game full of confidence and feeling extremely positive, and it's important we keep the momentum which we've built up over the last few matches.
'Man City was a massive game, we all knew the importance of it, so to get the result was fantastic, and to then follow that up at Arsenal, not just the result, but the performance as well, was great from the lads.
'Everybody's feeling sharp because we're winning football matches, but there are no easy games in the Premier League and Newcastle will be another tough test for us.'
Cahill was the only player to start against both City and Arsenal, and with the manager having made 10 changes to the side for the midweek clash in north London, he was rewarded with an impressive display, and those players who perhaps haven't been involved as much as they would have liked, staking a claim for a place in tomorrow's starting line-up.
'The manager asked for selection problems before the Arsenal game and that's what he got,' explains the 27-year-old. 'We've got a squad of players who could all quite easily be starting, over the last two games we've pretty much played with two different teams and played really well.
'It can only be a positive that everybody's performing and looking fresh, as a squad we're going well and the manager will have a difficult job choosing the team to play at Newcastle.'
It's been a positive start to the season for Cahill, both for club and country, with the Chelsea defender producing a number of solid displays at the heart of our defence, regardless of whether he's partnering John Terry or David Luiz.
The manager, thus far, has rotated the three players to great effect, and after a short spell on the sidelines earlier this month, Cahill has started the last three matches.
'I'm pleased with my form,' he says. 'I've played 14 games this season for Chelsea and England and kept nine clean sheets, so for me personally it's going really well.
'I'm pleased with the way I've been playing and I just hope I can maintain it. The manager has rotated a little bit and I was out of the side for a few weeks. Every player wants to be in the team but I've started the last three and obviously I want to play as often as possible. The team are defending well collectively though and that's what it's all about.'
The match itself sees us take on a Newcastle side who have had a mixed start to the campaign, but Alan Pardew will undoubtedly be looking for a response from his players following last week's 2-1 defeat in the Tyne-Wear derby against Sunderland.
St James' Park is a notoriously difficult place to visit, as we found out to our cost last season, and with players such as Hatem Ben Arfa, Yohan Cabaye and Loic Remy in their ranks, they will certainly pose a serious threat.
'They've got the ability and the fans are really good up there, it's always a difficult place to go and try to get a result,' says Cahill. 'We had a bad defeat there last season, which left a bitter taste for me because I don't think we performed very well, so hopefully we can try and put that right tomorrow.
'They've got individual players with the ability to hurt us so we need to be focused, but with some big games going on around us we need to go and get a win.'
While Cahill will be doing everything possible to help the Blues achieve success between now and the end of the campaign, he now has the added incentive of securing a place in Roy Hodgson's England squad for the World Cup in Brazil, and he reflected on his recent exploits with the national side.
'It was another highlight in my career, helping the national side reach the World Cup,' he says.
'There was a lot of pressure going into those games because it means so much to the whole country, it's one of the biggest sporting events in the world and you want to be a part of it.
'We had four matches and needed at least three wins. We did that, so all credit to the manager and players, now we can look forward to the summer. If I'm lucky enough to be selected it will be a great experience.'
Chelsea TV's Wherever They May Be will bring you all the build-up ahead of tomorrow's game, with host Jason Cundy joined in the studio by Tommy Langley and Graham Stuart. The show starts at 11.45am.