Malouda: We will step up

Florent Malouda is hoping to help
Chelsea underline their superiority and silence their doubters.

The reigning Premier League
champions have enjoyed a flying start to the 2010/11 campaign, boasting a 100
per cent record five games into the season. During those fixtures they have
plundered 21 goals, proving that they are once again the team to beat in the
English top flight.

There have, however, had a
favourable fixture list in the Premiership. French winger Malouda, who has been
in red hot form, does not buy into that belief, but is adamant that Chelsea can
further underline their credentials with impressive showings in upcoming
contests with Manchester City and Arsenal.

He said: “People don’t believe what
we have done up until now has been that great because they say we have had easy
games. This will show we’re ready for any kind of opposition.

“A lot of people see these two
games as a test but we’re ready. For us it could be our opportunity to prove
that we’re champions and we will defend our title at any price. Both will be
tough opponents but we have confidence in ourselves and the way we are working.

“We’re trying to improve on what we
did last season. We didn’t come back thinking we are champions so it will be
easy. We know there is going to be pressure but we have experienced players who
are ready to handle that. We’re much better under pressure so now we just have
to stay calm.

“Manchester City was the only team
to do the double over us last season and that could be a big motivation for us.
I know they’re getting better and bought a lot of good players. We’re aware
that the season is long and you don’t win anything in September. We have to
carry on and keep our focus.

Malouda has played a leading role
for the Blues so far this term, notching six goals, but insists he has not set
any targets and has played down any suggestion that he could top Didier Drogba
in the club’s scoring charts. “By the end of the season Didier will be far
ahead of me,” he added. “I can compete but not over a long time.”

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