2017 UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL HOTELS, CARDIFF June 3RD & KIEV 2018 - CLICK HERE to BOOK HOTELS PACKAGES Analysing Mata's equaliser – Leeds 1-5 Chelsea

Analysing Mata's equaliser – Leeds 1-5 Chelsea

A 5 goal thumping against your old rivals is a joy to behold for just about every fan and despite Chelsea conceding the first goal, they recaptured their focus in the second half and proceeded to the semi-finals in style .

Here is the 47th minute, Juan Mata equalizer –


So the first thing to be said is that Chelsea started with a 4-2-31 like they always do and it looked like this on paper.


Azpi, Ivan, Luiz , Bert

Lampard, Oscar

Marin, Mata, Moses


Now seeing the above figure, things look a bit different. Lampard has wandered upfront, which now restricts Oscar’s movement. In the absence of Mikel, Chelsea need to make sure that their pivot is balanced and only one player attacks at a time, hence Oscar stays in the middle. David Luiz has wandered upfront with the ball and Torres has come up to receive it. Notice how there are 2 players trying to press him . This just highlights the fact that Torres is still very much a false 9 under Rafa and the Spanish manager has just improved upon Di Matteo’s tactical philosophy .


Mata is then given the ball and you can see a change. Torres after pulling a defender away, as false 9’s usually do, created space. Moses has seen it and needs to rush in as Mata holds the ball. This can also create a vacuum in the No.10 role and Lampard is on the move to fill it.


Azpilicueta has charged into the frame and has not pushed up as we have to remember that Marin is on the right. Mata makes the run as Torres looks to give it to Moses. Notice the amount of space in the No.9 role, all thanks to Torres. Yes, you can give him some credit here.


Moses has received the ball at an awkward angle and by this time, the left-back has covered for the center-back who roamed for Torres. Mata is asking for a pass, as he can take a pop from this distance. The confused CB is too blame, because if Moses did look up, he could have crossed it wide to Marin, who could have created another chance.


Mata has a shot at goal and scores. All very simple but in reality a very beautiful move. More moves like this and we would have a truckload of goals. Points to be noted are.

Torres was pivotal in dragging the defender.

Moses showed good sense of environment by cutting in.

Mata pushed forward after seeing space

Lampard and Oscar understood each other and communicated well.

Another thing to notice is that, Rafa’s done well with the defense in this team. Oscar and Lampard partnership just about can work if properly experimented with. The problem remains though, whether it can be used against a big side.


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