The Blues have started the season strongly and find themselves third in the table ahead of their clash with Leeds on Saturday night.
They are just two points adrift of reigning champions Liverpool and league-leaders Tottenham – who they held to a 0-0 draw last weekend.
Many believe Chelsea are strong candidates for the title after their influx of talent last summer, with Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz among the star attackers to arrive at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues also strengthened their defence with the signings of Ben Chilwell and Thiago Silva, and they have conceded just one goal in their last five league games.
But Hargraves – who won the Premier League with Manchester United in 2008 – has played down the Blues’ title changes, insisting City and Liverpool remain far stronger teams.
Quizzed on whether Chelsea are legitimate title contenders, Hargreaves told Premier League Productions : “I don’t think so.
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“I like Chelsea and I like what Frank Lampard is building, but I just think Liverpool and Manchester City are above them.
“I don’t think it will even be close. I think it will be those two first and second and a bunch of other teams after that.
“Frank has finally settled on this team but those teams [Liverpool and Man City] have been doing it for years and they both know their best teams.
“Chelsea are probably the third-best team in England but I don’t think they’re good enough or consistent enough to compete with the two teams who have been doing it for far longer and have better players.”
City and Liverpool have won the last three Premier League titles between them, while Chelsea’s last triumph came in the 2016/17 season under Antonio Conte.
Do you agree with Hargreaves’ verdict that Chelsea are not title contenders this season? Have your say here.
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