Chelsea padded its lead in the Premier League race, with Diego Costa's double leading the club to a 4-2 win over Southampton on Tuesday.
Entering the day, Chelsea knew that five wins in its last six games would do the trick to secure the title for the club, which is riding the high of ousting Tottenham from the FA Cup in their riveting semifinal over the weekend.
It was Eden Hazard and Costa who combined to make the opening impact vs. the Saints five minutes in. After receiving a pass from Cesc Fabregas, Costa held possession deep into the Southampton box before picking out Hazard with a cutback pass. He finished clinically with a low attempt to open the scoring with his 15th goal of the league campaign.
Oriol Romeu scored against his old club to answer for Southampton 20 minutes later, though, redirecting Manolo Gabbiadini's cross at the goal mouth after a set-piece sequence, equalizing for the Saints and making it 1-1.
Gary Cahill put Chelsea back in front just before halftime off a free-kick sequence, heading home (while Costa attempted to scissor kick from directly behind him) in stoppage time to give Chelsea a 2-1 lead.
Diego Costa added some much-needed insurance in the 54th minute with his 50th career goal for Chelsea, heading home after a cross from Fabregas following a short corner play to make it 3-1.
Costa added his second of the game in the 89th minute with a nice finish after a brilliant series of one-two passes:
Former Chelsea player Ryan Bertrand pulled back a consolation goal for Southampton with a header in one of the last bits of action in the game, but it was too little, too late, as Chelsea provisionally leads Tottenham by seven points. Tottenham plays at Crystal Palace on Wednesday prior to Sunday's North London derby vs. Arsenal.