Jose Mourinho had mixed emotions after moving six points clear in the Premier League title race after believing a wrongly-awarded penalty cost his side two more points in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Southampton.
Diego Costa’s first Premier League goal in almost two months was cancelled out by a Dusan Tadic penalty after Nemanja Matic was adjudged to have fouled Sadio Mane, a decision which irked Mourinho.
“There are two perspectives,” said Mourinho, after his side extended their advantage over Manchester City, who lost at Burnley on Saturday.
“One perspective is a draw at home against Southampton is not a good result. For me that perspective is very acceptable, because I have this feeling.
“The second perspective is we had a lead of five points to second place, now we have a lead of six points and with one less match to play.
“If somebody tells me in August that at the end of March we are six points in front and one match in hand, I would sign immediately. No doubts.”
The Premier League is Chelsea’s sole focus after their midweek Champions League elimination to Paris St Germain.
Mourinho feels third-placed Arsenal, who are seven points behind, are still in the title race, but does not know what to expect from the Gunners, who the Portuguese believes have an easier run-in than the Blues.
“More teams are in the race,” added Mourinho, whose side go to the Emirates Stadium on April 26.
“For me, which momentum? 3-1 against Monaco or 3-0 against West Ham? It depends on the momentum.”
Mourinho felt Chelsea were, for the second successive match against Southampton, undone by decisions by the match officials.
Mourinho was fined £25,000 for saying there was a “clear campaign” against his side after Cesc Fabregas was denied a penalty and booked for diving instead in the December 28 draw at St Mary’s.
The Blues boss on Sunday was frustrated Matic was penalised and Branislav Ivanovic was not awarded a spot kick at the other end.
“I’m happy with the situation. I’m happy with the six-point lead, but I’m not happy with the result,” Mourinho said.
“If you remember our two matches against Southampton: in one game one penalty that is not a penalty and in another game a penalty that was not given. You are speaking about six points transformed into two points.”
Mourinho was clearly upset with the penalty decisions, but bit his tongue on this occasion.
He said: “My opinion is not important. Important is Mr Mike Dean (the referee).
“His decision was a penalty and his decision was no penalty on Ivanovic.”
Ivanovic may have been clipped by Tadic, but fell theatrically, dissuading Dean from pointing to the spot.
Asked about the fall, Mourinho deferred to his media officer sitting alongside, saying: “You have to control me, if not...”
Southampton manager Ronald Koeman was “very pleased” with his side’s display.
“To get a good result against them you need luck, you need a great goalkeeper, you need great organisation in a team and we had that today,” Koeman said.
“(I am) proud of the team. That gives a very good feeling.”