London, United Kingdom | AFP |
Chelsea fell short of becoming the first team to win 14 consecutive matches within the same English top-flight season after losing 2-0 at Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday.
Here are the longest winning streaks since England’s top division was relaunched as the Premier League in 1992:
11 wins: Chelsea (April-September 2009)
The 2008-09 season was a tumultuous one for Chelsea, with Luiz Felipe Scolari sacked as manager in February after only seven months in charge. But the team recovered form under interim manager Guus Hiddink and finished the season with a run of five successive wins. Scolari’s permanent successor, Carlo Ancelotti, picked up where Hiddink had left off, overseeing six straight wins at the start of a season that would end with a free-scoring Chelsea team crowned league champions and FA Cup winners.
11 wins: Manchester United (December 2008-March 2009)
Beginning with a 1-0 victory at Stoke City on Boxing Day, Alex Ferguson’s United went on a run of 11 consecutive wins that shot them to the top of the table. They kept clean sheets in the first nine games, won six matches 1-0 and only conceded two goals over the entire run. The sequence came to a juddering halt in a 4-1 home defeat by Liverpool, which was followed by a 2-0 loss at Fulham. But a burst of seven wins carried Cristiano Ronaldo and his team-mates to a third consecutive title.
11 wins: Liverpool (February-April 2014)
Liverpool’s 24-year wait for the league title appeared destined to come to an end as a team spearheaded by Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge rattled off a series of thrilling victories in the English spring of 2014. Their victims included Arsenal (5-1), Manchester United (0-3) and title rivals Manchester City (3-2). But Brendan Rodgers’s side were to come unstuck in a 2-0 home defeat against Chelsea, Steven Gerrard’s unfortunate slip gifting Demba Ba a goal that opened the door for City to claim the title.
11 wins: Manchester City (April-September 2015)
City lost their title to Chelsea the following season, but they finished that campaign like a train, winning their last six fixtures. Manuel Pellegrini’s men began the subsequent campaign in equally impressive fashion, winning their first five games without conceding a goal, but would ultimately finish fourth.
12 wins: Manchester United (March-August 2000)
United roared to the finish line in the 1999-2000 title race, winning their final 11 games and ending the campaign with a record 18-point advantage over nearest rivals Arsenal. They scored 37 goals in the process, including seven in a 7-1 demolition of West Ham United in which Paul Scholes claimed a hat-trick. The following season began with a 2-0 win over Newcastle United and would once again end with United top of the pile.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@Spurs_MAS) January 4, 2017
13 wins: Chelsea (September 2016-January 2017)
The seeds for Chelsea’s storming run of wins were sown during a 3-0 defeat at Arsenal in late September, when new manager Antonio Conte switched to his preferred 3-4-3 formation. It proved the catalyst for a stunning winning streak, with Chelsea notably beating Tottenham Hotspur (2-1), Manchester United (4-0) and Manchester City (1-3) before their run came to an end in a 2-0 defeat at Tottenham on Wednesday.
14 wins: Arsenal (February-August 2002)
Arsenal set a record for the most wins within a single Premier League season (13) — since matched by Chelsea — and the most successive wins in the history of the English top flight (14) as they romped to a second league and FA Cup double under Arsene Wenger. Fourth in the table in early February, Arsenal tore to the front with a run of 11 wins on the spin before securing the title with a 1-0 success at the home of title rivals Manchester United. They finished the season by beating Everton 4-3 at Highbury and opened their title defence with a 2-0 win over Birmingham City before drawing 2-2 at West Ham.