Chelsea can inflict more pain on Manchester City, according to Paul Merson

Chelsea can inflict more pain on Manchester City, according to Paul Merson (Picture: Getty)

Paul Merson has warned Manchester City that Chelsea’s young guns could end their Premier League title defence.

A home clash against Frank Lampard’s in-form Blues awaits the defending champions following the conclusion of the international break.

Following Sunday’s 3-1 defeat at Anfield, Pep Guardiola’s side are currently nine points adrift of Liverpool and Merson says they cannot afford to slip further behind their title rivals.

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Chelsea are currently above City in the Premier League and the Arsenal hero believes Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Christian Pulisic can inflict further pain on Guardiola.

Discussing the title race, Merson told Sky Sports: ‘You have to remember that City have Chelsea at home next who are good going forward and you are talking about a team who are going to give you problems at the back with Abraham, Mount and Pulisic.

‘This is going to be a problem game and if they do not win that game and Liverpool win…

‘City have to get through their next six or seven games before they can be title contenders again. They have not got a good run, but if they win all of them and are still in the title race come Christmas, then I will go fair enough.’

Merson also says Liverpool have one hand on the Premier League title after their huge victory over City on Merseyside.

He added: ‘Liverpool have lost one game in the last 51 and they have played City three times in that time, so I just do not see them losing four or five games ’till the end of the season.

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‘That is what they would have to lose as City would not be able to afford to lose any games if they only lost three.

‘So for me, I think it is Liverpool’s to throw away – if they do not win it this year, I cannot tell you when they will win it again.

‘I do not see City catching them, not with their defensive problems at the moment. They are just nowhere near good enough defensively.

‘I just think Liverpool are too good and I just do not see them getting beaten by any of the lesser teams.

‘And if they do, they have to score two or three goals, which is not going to happen.’

Before the international break, Chelsea beat London rivals Crystal Palace 2-0 at home to record their sixth successive Premier League victory.

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