Chelsea winger Florent Malouda has warned Manchester City and Arsenal that the Blues are still the team to beat.
Runaway Premier League leaders Chelsea have blitzed their way to five successive wins, scoring 21 goals and conceding just one.
And Malouda is relishing the next two league games with City on Saturday and the Gunners eight days later.
The six-goal Frenchman said: “Lots of people see these games as a test but I would say we are ready. It will be an opportunity for us to prove we are the champions and that we will defend our title at any price.
“So we will be ready. There will be a lot of pressure, but we have to use our experience and stay calm. Our only objective is to get points.
“These games will show that we are ready for any kind of opposition.”
Saturday’s trip to Eastlands will also see Roberto Mancini’s expensively assembled side put their title credentials to the test.
Mancini has splashed out more than £100 million over the summer to bring the likes of David Silva, James Milner and Yaya Toure to the club.
“Can City win the title this season? Of course," Malouda said.
“They have improved their squad. Our challenge is to win there, their players will see this as a chance to show they are ready to fight for the title.”
Arsenal’s ‘Invisibles’ went the entire 2003/04 season undefeated, a run that extended to 49 games. But Malouda insists he is not interested in Chelsea emulating the Gunners' feat.
“If we lose one game and become champions, I’d take that. We are not trying to beat any records or copy Arsenal.
“We are just trying to improve on what we did last year.”
By Luke Nicholls