John Obi Mikel is preparing for what he feels could be Chelsea's 'toughest season' yet, but added that a calm and fearless approach will lead the Blues to victory.
The Nigerian midfielder has never tasted Barclays Premier League glory, having joined the club after Chelsea were back-to-back champions between 2004 and 2006, and he added that it was 'horrible to lose the title' after leading the race for so long last year.
"It will be tough to win a trophy this year, I think this will be the toughest season Chelsea will have," he said. "Everywhere teams are spending money or getting better. But Chelsea are tough too.
"We know we need to improve but the most important thing is that we know we can improve. We should not be afraid.
"It was horrible to lose the title, everyone who follows football knows that we had it in our hands. We began so well, everyone thought we would win the title. I don't know why we stopped winning."
Mikel blamed the tense attitude at Stamford Bridge for the Blues' mid-season blip, and believes that relaxation could have been key to helping the club turn things around under Carlo Ancelotti.
"Thinking about it, everyone was really tense. I think people were too tense at the club. We worked and worked in training trying to correct our mistakes but perhaps we should have relaxed. Maybe we just tried too hard. We needed to relax and feel comfortable."
The 24-year-old, who has yet to score a league goal for Chelsea, was keen to start up a tally to rival his goal-hungry teammate Frank Lampard, although Mikel's some way behind the England international, who has over 100 goals in the English top flight.
"The main thing from me this season will be to score goals. I have to score more from midfield," he continued. "I used to score a lot but I don't know what has happened to them recently.
"Frank always scores goals, he seems to have scored them all from midfield. I think some of the guys need to score as well to take some pressure off him. Frank is good but Chelsea have never been about one player."
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