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Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Jose Mourinho left Chelsea at middle of last season in a hazardous state that needed fixing.

Although Guus Hiddink was able to arrest the decline and return some sort of form for the club, it was not until Antonio Conte delivered the title that the Blues really emerged as a force once again.

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Conte led Chelsea to the title in his first season in charge

When the Italian was appointed at the beginning of the season, many were skeptical of how a coach who favoured a three man defense could do in the league.

He however transformed the thoughts of everyone from Arsene Wenger, Maurico Pochettino to Sam Allardyce who have all since switched to a three man defense.

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Conte was not given the backing of ex-players and pundits to challenge for the title but then he proved them all wrong.

Here are eight high profile names who doubted the Blues;

1. Gary Neveille

The December, the Sky Sports analyst was skeptical Chelsea could win the title despite their impressive run of form.

He said: “I didn’t think they would be champions at the start of the season. I’m still not sure, I wouldn’t fully trust any of them yet, but they do like they are producing the type (champions) performances."

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Gary Neville during his spell as Valencia manager

2. Paul Scholes, Owen Hargreaves, Rio Ferdinand

The three former Manchester United stars were asked by BT Sport's Jake Humphrey “Can Chelsea win the league?”

They all replied "no".

3. Alan Shearer

The Premier League's highest goal scorer ever did not believe the title would be in London, rather thinking it was going to Manchester City.

Asked mid-season who he still thought would win the league, Shearer still backed City.

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Shearer played for Newcastle and Balckburn

4. Micheal Owen

Back in December, the former Liverpool and Manchester United striker said: “I think a North West team will win the Premier League this season so that’s Manchester United, Liverpool or Manchester City.

“I’m going to go for Liverpool to win the league. They are playing really well and have no European football.

“Second, I’m going to go for Chelsea, third Man City and fourth Arsenal.”

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Micheal Owen as a player for Manchester United

5. Paul Merson

The Arsenal legend and Sky Sport analyst was another who did not believe in the hype of Conte despite his impressive showing with Italy at Euro 2016.

He said in November: “They might just be a bit light to win the title, if Eden Hazard or Diego Costa got injured and were out for a while they’d struggle, but they look like top-four material now.”

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6. Harry Redknapp

The legendary manager was not sure about Conte's tactics back in November saying: “I still think they’re short, at left back, I’m still not convinced about the three at the back whether they can play enough.

“I still don’t know if they have enough flair in midfield,” adding: “I’m still not sure all-round that that is a team that will win the league.”

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Harry Redknapp was very wrong in predicting how Chelsea would fair this season

7. Sir Alex Ferguson

No one expects Ferguson to support any team to win the title asides his former side Manchester United.

He named his challengers for the title and surprisingly left out Chelsea.

He said: “I think there are five potential candidates: Manchester City as favourites, Tottenham and Liverpool, but also Man United are still there if we get some consistency soon.

“Even when you are trailing by six, eight points, it’s still possible to catch one or two teams."

Alex Ferguson and 7 other people who never believed Chelsea could win the league

Sir Alex Ferguson

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