No place to hide for Foxes at Stamford Bridge
Mourinho won't allow newly-promoted teams to pour ice on his title charge
CHELSEA v LEICESTER CITY
(Tonight, 10pm, SingTel mio TV Ch 102 & StarHub TV Ch 227)
Chelsea will look to build on their excellent start to the season by crushing their second newly-promoted team of the week in west London tonight.
Leicester City, winners of the Championship last season, will have their work cut out if they're to take anything from this encounter.
Jose Mourino's side are the title favourites, a status they did not earn by slipping up in winnable home games.
The Foxes could be pleased with their start last week, a late Chris Wood goal securing a point against Everton, but this will be a very different proposal.
There will be a level of excitement at Stamford Bridge, not least because of the way in which the Blues dismantled Burnley on Monday.
It wasn't so much the scoreline that felt ominous, it was the nerveless way in which it was accrued.
Burnley, brave and ambitious, put Mourinho's side on their bottoms in the opening exchanges, lashing home an early opening goal.
But, far from unsettling Chelsea, it only made them more determined. It was like watching Godzilla taking a missile to the chest, roaring in anger and then levelling the financial district.
That's the personality of Mourinho, the one that he works so hard to press onto his teams.
A refusal to be bowed by exterior pressures, trivialities like the scoreline.
It only works when the team are filled with personalities strong enough to deal with those mental demands.
The news that Fernando Torres is linked with a move to Roma is more evidence, were it needed, that Mourinho is weeding the garden, removing the men on whom he cannot rely.
With Diego Costa (below, right) leading the line, Chelsea are a different proposition.
Burnley were the first to discover that the Brazil-born Spanish international is a real pain.
He doesn't simply hang in the central areas, he roams the final third looking for trouble.
He's all elbows and buttocks, pushing and jabbing, never giving the defender a moment's peace.
In other words, he's exactly the sort of player Mourinho adores.
But it was the performance of Cesc Fabregas that really stood out.
A player of unimpeachable quality, the former Arsenal man has barely any weak spots and, as Mourinho pointedly said, he's far more effective when he's deployed in the centre of midfield.
Barcelona's use of him as a false No. 9 or a winger certainly negated his talent for a lofted pass. He will swiftly become a Stamford Bridge favourite, the rightful heir to Frank Lampard.
Thibaut Courtois has been given the responsibility of tending goal this season, a huge vote of confidence given that his promotion means the demise of Petr Cech. And yet, it is the right decision.
The Belgian is one of Europe's best goalkeepers and, if it's true that his representatives threatened to move him on if he didn't play, it's not hard to understand why Chelsea have given him this chance.
Leicester are no whipping boys. They won the second flight, not because of any outstanding individual, but because of a team ethic and organisation that should see them to safety this season.
Wes Morgan is an authoritative defender who will relish the challenge of marking Costa.
Leonardo Ulloa is a prolific striker who opened his account against Everton and has a long history of goals in Spain and the Championship with Brighton.
There is also the prospect of Kasper Schmeichel, a goalkeeper who has matured and improved immeasurably since his nervous early displays for Manchester City in 2007.
But, for all that, this will be one of Leicester's most trying afternoons of the entire season.
Chelsea are going places and they are unlikely to allow newly-promoted teams to stand in their way.
Mourinho answered the ice bucket challenge earlier this week, reacting to his drenching with a primal roar of discomfort.
This is likely to be a far easier proposition.