Due to a hectic summer of football with the Spanish national team Mata’s start to the season was a spectacular failure in terms of fantasy returns but after being rested in round 4 he has gone on to play some of the best football we have ever seen from him.
Since round 4 Mata has only failed to produce either a goal or an assist in six games including substitute appearances which is an amazing stat given his managers love for rest and rotation.
There is however much like Gareth Bale a fear surrounding Mata’s home form, from 10 goals and 12 assists this season he has only managed to produce two goals and five assists in front of the Stamford Bridge crowd which is somewhat worrying for fantasy managers, but then again when he producing returns like those we have seen this matter could be overlooked for the greater good.
Chelsea face up against West Brom, West Ham, Sunderland, Tottenham, Swansea and Everton at the Bridge over the coming weeks and despite Mata’s relative poor returns compared to his away from these are all games that we could expect to see more from the midfield mystro against the likes of West Brom, West Ham and Sunderland, however the games against Spurs, Swansea and Everton could prove to be a sterner test for Mata and co.
On the up side however Chelsea’s away fixtures will breed optimism as the Blue’s travel to Manchester City, Fulham, Southampton, Liverpool, Manchester United and Aston Villa. That’s right I did say optimism! You see despite these games undoubtedly being tough for the Blue’s none of the aforementioned side have been producing clean sheets on a regular basis at home this season which will bode well for Mata given his love for scoring goals on the road.
There is as always a caviate with Chelsea players and that is Rafa’s love for rotation, however it would seem that if history has told us anything it is that Mata is generally rested every six games and given that he was rested last time out we are unlikely to see him warm the bench until round 32 which comes against Sunderland at the Bridge which in the grand scale of things may not be all that bad.