Jose Mourinho: 'Chelsea thrive in big games'

Jose Mourinho insists that Chelsea's success against their closest rivals this season is due to a love of the big games.

Jose Mourinho has claimed that Chelsea's success against England's other elite clubs this season is down to their love of important matches, and not because they are Premier League title challengers.

The Blues ended Manchester City's 100% home record under Manuel Pellegrini with a 1-0 victory at the Etihad Stadium on Monday, but Mourinho immediately dismissed their chances of winning the Premier League.

"Because we love the big games, that why we do well in them," the Chelsea manager told reporters at a post-match press conference. "When you love the big games, you feel extra motivated for them.

"I keep saying the evolution of this team is not to play the Europa League and be 20 points behind in the Premier League, but to play the the big games like this with pressure. And we showed aesthetically mentally we were fantastic.

"But I don't agree we can win the league. You can see we lost points at home to West Brom and West Ham, we lost at Stoke and Newcastle, we are a team in evolution. But this is the kind of performance that helps the team to grow up a lot."

The result moved Chelsea level on points with City in the table, but they still trail leaders Arsenal by two points.

Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic celebrates after scoring the opening goal against Manchester City during their Premier League match on February 3, 2014
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