Andre Villas-Boas admits Chelsea's poor form in December has cost them any chance of winning the Premier League title race.
But the manager remains confident his position is not under threat despite his admission that his side's performances have fallen well short of expectations. Villas-Boas's side sank to a 3-1 loss to Aston Villa -- their third home league defeat of the season -- extending their recent run to four games without a win.
Aston Villa's Stephen Ireland (centre) taps the ball into the back of the net during Saturday's EPL match against Chelsea in London. Pic/AFP
The defeat meant they were unable to take advantage of Manchester United's defeat to Blackburn Rovers and Tottenham Hotspur's failure to beat Swansea City, and allowed Arsenal to leapfrog them into fourth place.
Villas-Boas -- whose side face Wolves on tonight -- said: "From what is happening now, Arsenal made the most of a good December. Liverpool, too, in some way. The rest of the teams have struggled.
"All of them dropped points, but we couldn't make the most of it. It's difficult for us to be in perspective for league contention this year."