Malouda unfazed by Sunderland loss

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Florent Malouda has played down the significance of Chelsea's shock defeat by Sunderland and insisted: "We have the players to defend our title."

The Blues were beaten 3-0 at home by the Black Cats and now lead Arsenal in the Barclays Premier League by only two points.But Malouda, currently preparing for France's international with England at Wembley on Wednesday, insists it was only a blip for Carlo Ancelotti's team.

He said: "Whatever people might say, we are still first in the league and that means that we have lost less points than our opponents. The sort of result against Sunderland can happen in the Premier League."

Malouda added: "We have had a great home record and now we have to start again. But we have the players to defend our title and there is nothing more to add to that.

"Our confidence has not been shaken. It is a long season and anyone can have a slight dip in form - whether it is a team or an individual.

"Like I said, we are still first in the league and were also one of the first to qualify out of our group for the Champions League.

"We will come through this spell."

Malouda's own form has come under the microscope in recent weeks with French coach Laurent Blanc suggesting a dip in fortunes had coincided with Chelsea's mini slump.

Malouda said: "I was injured recently so it has been a bit of a tough period. But it is much more important to me that Chelsea have had a great start to the season rather than issues over my personal form.

"That doesn't mean to say I lack ambition but for me it's about Chelsea starting well.

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Florent Malouda
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