May 16, 2017 / 10:06 AM / 3 months ago

Cahill counts on past lessons to help Chelsea defend title

Australia's Tim Cahill celebrates his second goal during their Asian Cup quarter-final soccer match against China at the Brisbane Stadium in Brisbane January 22, 2015.Edgar Su/File Photo

(Reuters) - Chelsea need to learn from the mistakes of last season to be better prepared to defend their Premier League title in the coming campaign, centre back Gary Cahill has said.

Chelsea sealed a second league title in three seasons after beating West Bromwich Albion 1-0 on Friday and followed that up with a 4-3 win over Watford on Monday, but Cahill is already looking ahead to the next challenge.

"Retaining the trophy next year has to be the goal," he told British media. "I really hope we have learned the lessons from what happened the last time we tried to do that."

Chelsea were crowned champions under Jose Mourinho in 2014-15 but endured a miserable defence of their title the following season, finishing 10th as 5,000-1 outsiders Leicester City emerged as surprise winners.

Leicester have also struggled following their unlikely success and are currently 11th in the table with two games to play.

"People talk about the hangover after success. Leicester felt a bit of that this season and we did last year," Cahill added. "The fact no one has done it for so long shows how very difficult it is to do."

Manchester United were the last team to successfully defend the league title, winning three in a row from 2006, while Chelsea notched consecutive wins in 2004 and 2005.

"History has proved it's very tough to win it back-to-back, but it has to be a target for us next year, 100 percent," Cahill said.

"But we have to be right for that. When you talk about winning it again, you look at the great players over the years who have won championships time and time again, it's like an addiction. You want to have this feeling again and again."

Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by John O'Brien

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