When Nemanja Matic was suspended ahead of Chelsea’s trip to Newcastle United a few weeks ago, many believed his absence wouldn’t be an issue and the Blues will take another easy three points at St. Jame’s Park.
But it didn’t go as expected, because without Matic sitting in front the Chelsea’s back-four the Blues looked stretched and uncomfortable on the counter attack… which led to a Papiss Cisse-inspired first defeat for Jose Mourinho’s men.
Was the loss and Matic’s absence coincidence? Probably not. The Serbian has played every minute possible when available for Mourinho, and these statistics prove why he is such an important figure.
With Matic in the starting lineup, Chelsea’s win rate is 73%… compared to 40% without him.
He is probably the first name on the teamsheet… even ahead the likes of Eden Hazard and Diego Costa… and why so many pundits have urged Arsenal to sign a player of his ilk and calibre.