Stoke manager Mark Hughes feels Chelsea's resolute approach gives them the edge on Liverpool in the Premier League title race.
The Potters face probably the most difficult festive fixtures of any Premier League team as they travel to Anfield to take on second-placed Liverpool on Tuesday before making the trip to Stamford Bridge to play leaders Chelsea on December 31.
Hughes will get to witness first hand the title credentials of both teams in the coming week but ahead of the matches the former Chelsea striker thinks his old club's knack of not conceding many goals gives them the advantage.
Chelsea, who head into Christmas with a six-point lead at the top, have let in just 11 goals so far while Liverpool, the division's leading scorers, have conceded 20 times - including three at Arsenal on the opening day and four in a recent defeat at Bournemouth.
"That could be the difference come the end of the season," said Hughes. "Chelsea look incredibly strong and resolute and they have a set way of playing which makes them hard to break down, whereas Liverpool maybe aren't quite as tight and seem to concede more goals.
"Chelsea have players in their squad who have been there and done it so it will be interesting to see if Liverpool can maintain their challenge."