During this season there haven’t been many positives, we’ve looked lacklustre, inconsistent and a lot of the time just plain poor. Games against Arsenal and Aston Villa at home have typified this. However, there are bright sparks, two main bright sparks. Juan Mata and Daniel Sturridge have flanked either Fernando Torres and Didier Drogba this season and both have seemed to flourish.
As we can see from the image above, both of the players have excelled. Mata has had 8 assists, 4 from open play and 5 goals. Sturridge has had 9 goals and 2 assists. They have contributed massively in goalscoring terms, with the little impact of Torres (2 goals) and Drogba (3 goals) the fact that these players contribute in both goals and assists is pivotal to the Chelsea side. However, both of these players can do better, especially Sturridge.
The problem with Mata is that he likes to drift inside, he is a fantastic player no doubt however it is arguable that he is wasted on the left side. Also, bringing Mata inside would not only benefit him but a certain Fernando Torres. Torres hasn’t been given the service, yes, it’s fair to argue that he has to take responsibility although the service from the midfield has been poor. Mata, being brought central would surely give Torres more chances and build his confidence and hopefully get more goals.
Sturridge on the other hand, is starting to become too selfish. This has been apparent for quite a while, the statistic that he has scored 9 goals is a great one, however in a wide position to only provide 2 assists, arguably says a lot. Fernando Torres has provided more assists and he’s supposed to be the main striker. Time and again Sturridge has elected to shoot when the better option is to pass, keeping the ball rather than using a simple pass. Arguably, Sturridge has started to believe in his own hype too much, wanting to be the main striker and trying to show that he should be the ‘main man’.
In conclusion, both Sturridge and Mata have been fantastic, however their contribution could be bettered. With a winger hopefully being bought in the summer, Mata can be brought inside and as such can be even more effective than in, what has been, a fantastic debut season so far for the Spaniard. Sturridge on the other hand needs to adapt his style of play, he needs to be more about the team than the individual, if he does that it would not only be beneficial for him (Euros 2012), it will also reap huge benefits for the Chelsea team. Both of these players have been fantastic and to get more out of them, there only needs to be small changes to their style of play and the team’s style of play.