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Lampard thrilled to be chasing Premier League glory with Chelsea once more

Lampard thrilled to be chasing Premier League glory with Chelsea once more

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The veteran midfielder feels that his side have been "off the pace" since topping the table in 2009-10 and is delighted to be doing more than fighting for a top-four place

Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard is relieved to be once again fighting for the Premier League title rather than merely chasing qualification for the Champions League.

Jose Mourinho's side lead the table by four points going into Saturday's clash with Arsenal, though Manchester City would overtake them if they win their games in hand.

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If successful in their quest to solidify their position, the Blues would secure the league trophy for the first time since 2009-10 and the England international is thrilled to be back in the hunt.

"I'm confident we can do it," he told reporters. "We've had two or three years of being off the pace now, coming up short in terms of our league position, and it's great to be back in the race.

"That desire to keep winning because you are fighting for the title, rather than fourth place, feels good."

Saturday's opponents, however, would close to within a point of Chelsea with a win at Stamford Bridge and Lampard is wary of the danger posed by the Gunners despite their eight-year trophy drought.

"It's a big test, a big game, considering we lost our last Premier League game at Aston Villa," he noted.

"Have Arsenal surprised me this season? Yes and no. To be fair, they are always in the top four and Champions League every year. I know they have been slightly off the pace in certain years but I think they have improved and I have a lot of respect for Arsenal.

"At this stage, you can't look too far ahead - it's game by game, desire and focus every time," he added. "People ask: 'What is the recipe for staying in front on the run-in?' but there isn't one.

"It's a matter of the team being focused and driven, every week, and that means the staff, the management and every individual in the squad being on their game. I think we have got that mentality but we've got to show it.

"Maybe Arsenal don't have experience of winning the title in their squad but they have a lot of quality and every team has to break the mould some time.

"Manchester City didn't have experience of winning the Premier League a couple of years ago but they won it so I wouldn't place too much emphasis on that."

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