If Chelsea should lift the Premier League trophy in May, Nemanja Matic believes this will have been a pivotal weekend in the title race.
Blues ground out a characterful 2-1 win at Villa Park on Saturday while title rivals Manchester City were reliant on a last gasp James Milner goal to avoid defeat at home to strugglers Hull.
The turn of events extended the Blues' cushion at the top of the table to seven points, and the Serbian midfielder believes Saturday could be one of the days the squad looks back on should they end the season on a high.
“Yes, of course,” he said. “Aston Villa – it is always a difficult to play here in this stadium.
“They always have special motivation when the play against us. We knew that before the game, we spoke about that, and we knew it was going to be very difficult to win here.
“That's why we are very very happy. In these kind of games, maybe it is going to be decided who wins the title.”
Following events at Eastlands, where Manuel Pellegrini's side were very nearly beaten by a team on a run of four straight defeats, Matic couldn’t hide a smile.
The 26-year-old said: “The draw is good for us, of course. It is better to be seven points more than City, than five.
“So we are very happy because we win, but also when City lost some points we are also happy.”
Blues host Everton this coming Wednesday evening. City are travelling to Stoke City and will potentially still be without talisman Yaya Toure, who is with his Ivory Coast side at the African Nations Cup.
Matic said: “Of course (beating Everton is important). Especially at home, we have to win to take points.
“So we will try to win. We know, also, it is going to be difficult. But if we want to be champions we have to.”