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Page last updated at 13:10 GMT, Friday, 28 November 2008

Arsenal can win league - Scolari


Scolari full of praise for Wenger

Chelsea boss Luiz Felipe Scolari is refusing to rule Arsenal out of the title race - even if his side beat them at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Arsene Wenger's Gunners are 10 points behind Scolari's Premier League leaders, and are down in fifth place.

But Scolari said: "Even if you're 15 points clear with five games to go, you're not champions. You're only champions at the end of the last game.

"This is a big game. Wenger's team play football, so it's difficult to win."

Scolari is looking forward to pitting his wits against his old friend Wenger in the team's first Premier League encounter of the season.

"This is the first time I'll have played against Wenger," said the Brazilian, who was appointed as Chelsea boss in June but who used to coach in Japan alongside the Frenchman in the 1990s.


"I met him for the first time in Japan - he's been my friend for 10 or 12 years now.

"I like him as a coach. If I chose five coaches in the world as the best, he'd be one of the five.

"I watched their game against Manchester United and it was one of the best games in the Premier League. This game against Chelsea will be like that as well."

Scolari goes into the game without Didier Drogba, who is serving a three-match ban for throwing a coin at Burnley fans during Chelsea's shock Carling Cup defeat.

The 30-year-old striker was back in the headlines on Monday after he reportedly met Inter Milan's sporting director Marco Branca in a Fulham restaurant to discuss a potential January transfer window move to the San Siro.

But Scolari, who left Drogba on the bench for Wednesday's Champions League draw with Bordeaux, says he believes the Ivorian is committed to Chelsea.

"Every minute in the day, I think he's happy," he added.

"He has my support every day - injured or not injured. I'm sure he's 100% committed to the club.

"All I know is that he can't play against Arsenal. I have to be thinking about the Arsenal game, not what might happen in 2010 or 2011."

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see also
Chelsea v Arsenal
27 Nov 08 |  Premier League
Win steadies ship, states Wenger
26 Nov 08 |  Arsenal
Bordeaux 1-1 Chelsea
26 Nov 08 |  Europe
Drogba banned for three matches
18 Nov 08 |  Chelsea
Scolari backs Drogba in coin row
15 Nov 08 |  Premier League

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