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Nemanja Matic- The Spider's Web

Nemanja Matic made his full debut for Chelsea yesterday in our 1-0 win at home to Stoke City in the FA Cup. Deployed in the holding midfield role by Mourinho, he acted as a sweeper in the midfield and added another dimension to our game. His defensive discipline allows players like Lampard and Ramires to roam further forward without fear of being caught out. Matic is good in the tackle and has a great eye for the game, putting a halt to several dangerous looking Stoke attacks.

Having said that, his distribution was a tale of two halves. He obviously understands the importance of the short pass and will play it with accuracy [89% pass completion] but the few times he attempted something slightly more long range, he appeared to over-do it. Obviously, there would have been nerves to compensate for yesterday but we need a player in the middle of the park who can pick a pass from all areas of the pitch.

I liken his domination of the middle of the park to a spider`s web. On the basis of his nickname, 'The Spider`, he controlled the tempo in and around the middle of the pitch and was a welcome sight pitted against the huge Stoke midfielders. He`s a superb tackler, aided by his mile long legs, and he`s strong on the ball. He was caught out a few times by the sudden change in pace and lost his footing on a number of occasions but that is a factor that he`ll adapt to. The Portuguese league is a very different animal to the Premier League!


I liked Matic yesterday. He brought another dimension to the team with his power and resilience in the middle and he is certainly an upgrade on Mikel. He provides more security for our back line and allows the more attacking minded players [Oscar, Lampard etc.] to go forward. I think his purchase will result in the departure of either Lampard, Luiz or Mikel though. Personally, I think Lampard has another season in him and Mikel is a good replacement for Matic so you`d have to look to Luiz. The Brazilian actually played quite well yesterday in the centre of defence but I still can`t stop myself cringing whenever he has the ball.

What do you think? Did you rate Matic`s performance yesterday? Can you envisage him becoming essential to Jose`s game plan?

Matic is not yet the finished article, be under no illusion. He has to adapt to the speed of the English game and his marauding runs from deep didn`t really come to fruition yesterday. Nonetheless, he has all the attributes to succeed in our team and I can see the Spider`s web becoming the dominant force in many games to come.
Up the Blues!




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The Journalist

Writer: Tom Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 27 2014

Time: 9:09AM

Your Comments

Excellent analysis. My 2 cents. He was very good and allowed lampard to go forward. His play is quick but got tired in 2nd half. He has to work on his fitness especially cardio to be a more complete player.
Blue India
For his performance i give a an 8/10.
Mebor
MOTM for me. For a 1st start at Chelsea football club I think he was superb. He she missed placed a couple of passes but for what he brought to the centre of the pitch I will forgive him that. This is what cfc have be yearning out for, for years! He should give this team the stability to now kick on. He is like an insurance policy for the rest of the team. They know if there out of position or attacking over zealously then they know Matic will be there to cover. Good performance from the new boy.
Dave-David
matic did very well yesterday considering it was his first came. he will get get better and better. a good addition to the squad. bring on the city of manchester lol
vitalwillian
I too think he was good n he'l only become better with moere games.it was good test against stoke.
blue5
'More'
blue5
too early to call.
johnny come lately
He played a good game yesterday and I personally hope that he could help to bring stability to the team in the long run. We could now try out Mikel in the advance position and decide his fate during summer. We have another jewel recuperating in Valencia (Orial Romeu) and based on what I read, he is doing well there... With him along side Matic in tough away game we have two DM who are quick on the ball to launch counter attack via Hazard, Willian and Salah....
DrWatsons
He can even drop back into defence if Luiz wants to bring the ball out from the back.
Seabourch
very promising start. Looks like he could be a very important part of the team for years to come. Its all coming together.
BIG_R
Lampard has another season in him? There are lots of players better than him out there. Matic is a left footed Mikel. Same player.
foreign_viewer
Diego costa rumours to cfc every day!
blue5
FINALLY we have got an autoMATIC starter in the dm role in doing so we hv got our MA-ZAR-CA back!!!!
AMENS
Lampard or Mikel should be the ones to make way. Marco Van Ginkel will soon return from injury. Romeu will comeback from his loan at Valencia and most important point- luiz is a CB not a DM,so he stays as JT's replacement. I'd choose Lampard to make way as this or next season could be his last as a Chelsea Player.#cfc
donpatoj1
Promising start and hope more to come. #ktbffh
syed230183_chelseafc
@ foreign viewer-I believe Lamps has another season in him, please not forget that he is a true Chelsea legend. I'm sorry but you are not a Chelsea "supporter" but someone, that for what ever reason, has decided to "follow" this club that I love. A true supporter supports, not constantly belittles everything and has not got a good word to say even when praise is due. Theres nothing wrong with constructive criticism as long as it is tempered with a positive attitude but, as far as I can tell, all I get from you is constant sarcasm and a doom and gloom attitude. I've been a supporter of this great club since I was 11 years old (1975-76 season) and I have not come across such a pessimistic person than you, not even when we almost got relegated to the old 3rd division. I'm sorry but I don't think this club needs or deserves people like you as followers. Please go follow someone else. There are much better clubs out there for you to pick on, maybe Man U is more your style? They do have that amazing legend you seem to love so much Mata. And I don't care if roman army feels he needs to report me for abuse hehehehehehehe as I am only saying what a deem to be true.
BIG_R
The past is gone. Lampard's time was last decade. He's not a top player any more. If Mourinho were fair he would be as ruthless with Lampard as he was with Casillas (goalkeeper, younger than Lampard, CL, Euro, World cup winner etc).
foreign_viewer
Lamps has still got a lot to offer, maybe not as a starter as he used to be week in week out, but you need his kind of experience in your in your squad. And I don't care, or even know, what Jose did at his other clubs as I'm not a jose FC supporter I'm a Chelsea FC supporter. And please either start supporting Chelsea or leave, we don't need people like you as hanger ons.
BIG_R
Well someone told me there are only 2 dms in the world. Pirlo n yaya. So Matic is not the answer coz he is not a dm . LOL!
Blue Krusaders
Matic is a terrific signing and was very impressive yesterday.He seems to win the ball so easily and then lays it off quickly.Lamps is still in good form and there's at least another season in him.He was so unlucky not to score when he arrived in the six yard box and then later chested the ball and hit a superb shot that brought a great save from the keeper.Luiz played ok but he loses his man too easily.If Crouch was on his game he would have scored when he got across Luiz at the near post and headed wide.I believe he should be sold and replaced with a proper defender.We are so fortunate that Cahill is playing out of his skin all season and been fantastic in most games.
THEBREEZE
What top club wants Lampard? It's all sentimental stuff. No facts. Oscar is better than him.
foreign_viewer
I also think of Matic as left footed Mikel. That being said, I rate Mikel much higher than most of people around here, so for me, Matic is a fabulous signing.
zg2000fs
Courtios........... Azpilicueta/Wallace.............Zouma/omeruo............Cahill/Luiz.............Annholt/shaw............Van Ginkel/Mikel........... Matic/Ramires......... Willian/Salah..........Oscar/Mceachran/Piazon........... Hazard/Traore/Atsu.................... Lukaku/Bamford/Feruz. Lineup for this comin ten yrs
Samson Yesaya
If my life depended on a player scoring a goal,there's no one I would pick before Frank Lampard.
THEBREEZE
Finally Chelsea has a DM. Matic is our only true DM and can play any formation or partnership.
Pavel Permiachkin
foreign_viewer, There isn't a Chelsea supporter in the world that doesn't know Lampard's best days are behind him, but that doesn't mean he has nothing to bring to the team and the squad. He is gradually being eased out - he didn't play against Man Utd - but showed yesterday that he still his an eye for goal and forced the Stoke keeper to make at least one decent save. If we are to have any chance of winning the title having Lampard around the squad will be invaluable. Why would any Chelsea supporter ever trash Frank Lampard?
CobhamBlue
Now we don't have to settle. Yesterday we were shown what it is to have a true DM on the team. One that also contributes and doesn't slow down play.
Pavel Permiachkin
matic impressed me alot yesterday and I don't get impressed easily by a player, if he (matic) keeps up that performance consistently then I'll say feck the yaya comparison, he'll make that position his own, sorry to say what I saw from matic yesterday was fresh, his forward passes to create a counter attack, his positional awareness is nice to watch, though its too soon to tell after all the accolades he received, but I believe with the players around him and salah, Chelsea have made the best signing of this transfer window, a mile ahead of manure's capture of mata, now I noticed something about matic yesterday, he kept it simple and did not try to shoot, the moment he unwraps that cannon of a left foot...............I'll wait till then
Desmondadonis
one of these days we'll have a midfield trio of mikel-matic-oscar in a tactical formation to snuff out a team's attack, probably in a second half game, would love to see how that would end
Desmondadonis
one of these days we'll have a midfield trio of mikel-matic-oscar in a tactical formation to snuff out a team's attack, probably in a second half game, would love to see how that would end
Desmondadonis
Wasn't it also a breathe of fresh air seen him making runs on the wing? Seeing him go aggressively for so many interceptions and get them? And after his interceptions most of the time he would make a good forward pass in the same second. Matic is a midfielder when he is playing as a DM and that is what I like. A DM shouldn't be a 5th defender, not talking about Luiz ;), who just happens to be the furthest up the field.
Pavel Permiachkin
one of these days we'll have a midfield trio of mikel-matic-oscar in a tactical formation to snuff out a team's attack, probably in a second half game, would love to see how that would end
Desmondadonis
Des where is Ramires in that Mikel-Matic-Oscar?
Pavel Permiachkin
Think it is too early to get an idea of what he totally provide to the team. We played Stoke City at home who have lost the last 8 matches @ the Bridge without scoring. City away will be sterner tests, but even then, I won't judge him.
KAKUfrank
no welcoming article to M.Salah's arrival?
habbo
@kakufrank are a lawyer? Sorry if it hurts u
habbo
are u a lawyer?*
habbo
If Mata is not good enough for Chelsea the same applies to Lampard.
foreign_viewer
@fv u are free to support mata so follow him
habbo
@habbo Salah hasn't played yet so I'm sure something will be published when he does!
Wizacar
Not a lawyer buddy........
KAKUfrank
F_V Lamps actually tends to play well when he has a competent DM to work with :). Which is even Rami/Lamps worked better than Mikel with him.
Pavel Permiachkin
Even why*
Pavel Permiachkin
Hopefully his arrival spells the end of Mikel. Even if Luiz were to go we'd replace him with another CB, so I don't think the signing of Matic affects luiz at all. Next season one (or both) of Romeu and MVG will be in the 1st team squad, and I'd rather we play them than play Mikel. And unlike lampard Mikel could raise a bit of money.
Humza_96
ok @kaku u are smart, can u give me something about diego costas rummours?
habbo
foreign_viewer, What are you talking about? Mata left because he wasn't a regular starter, he's 25 and wanted regular starts, and Man Utd offered £37.1m. Lampard's 35, hasn't complained about being on the bench and no one is offering £37.1m for him. The two situations are completely different.
CobhamBlue
Except rumors here and there which you can't make much of, nothing new. Also rumors about Griezmann and Luke shaw joining before the end of the window, but who knows.......
KAKUfrank
Maybe, you meant Terry
foreign_viewer
Lampard hasn't complained?
foreign_viewer
@kaku thanks
habbo
F_V just for giggles may I ask you why "our only true DM" has lookee the worst when partnered with Lamps???
Pavel Permiachkin
F_V, can you just shut up for one second???? Seems you're one of those people who make more sense with their mouths closed!!!! I know this is a personal attack on you.... I could get banned? NO?
Tunez
rammy would play with matic naturally, so we would be seeing much of that, mikel-matic-oscar might be a rare combo @Pavel......
Desmondadonis
I think the best thing is to "Ignore" you........ Last comment I make about ya! *hiss*
Tunez
Guys, I hope I'm not being tooo critical here, but seeing yesterdays pooor outing in front of goal; I hope our poor finishing isn't creeping back into our play!!!! What do yall think? Carefree!!
Tunez
Let me re phrase my question so there is no mix up... Why out of all the players that partnered Lamps including our fake DMs why is it that our "Only true DM" in Mikel has looked the worst out of every one when partnered with Lamps? You know a true DM is supposed ro accommodate the team and not the other way around.
Pavel Permiachkin
I got you Des I myself am curious to see what happens if Matic is plays and Mikel is given a more similar role when he plays for Nigeria, that is where his best games come out IMO.
Pavel Permiachkin
Hasty analysis @Tom, and need I say it was needless to mention Luiz at all here?! Also, is there any gainsaying that “cringing whenever Luiz has the ball” is one helluva silly cliche popularized by an ex-manure that shouldn't be further flogged on by a True Blue I was made to believe you are? An automatic starter for the Selecao of Brazil of all football teams? Do you think England and Hodgson would ever in their wildest nightmares drop him for any other defender in the Three Lions set-up if he were English?? Go figure! More so, blimey, do you also think you're wiser than the Barcelona brain trust(apologies to my respected friend @GabeU) who would give anything to snap him off our hands? Alas mate, disappointing mention to say the least. FYI, for whatever it is worth, the arrival of Matic on the Chelsea scene should worry Mikel more than anyone else. Simple as....
HGH Magic
Terry is getting old and we need CBs. I don't see how Luiz gets affected too much here by Matic shining, if anything Mikel has more to deal with than Luiz.
Pavel Permiachkin
Honestly i'm some how disappointed by some of your comments. No single respect for a player who have sascrificed so much for you over seven years. Whether Mikel goes or stay, he have achieved alot with blues as a player. How dare you slate a player who have served for the past seven years just because a certain Matic played a single game in FA cup. Not even BPL of champions league. For your information, mikel is tested and trusted in Bpl and cchampions league than matic
Anoruo Chibuzo Jonat
I respect Mikel and support him as long as he is a Chelsea player. What I don't respect and can't stand is his bias irrational fan base. The only arguments you lot have is either it is Chelsea or any body elses fault he doesn't look spectacular or that he is the "only true DM" we have. I can be critical of the player if I feel like it, it is my right. If there is irrational bias for the guy then I have the right to criticize that bias. There is no hate involved for Mikel personally. Either refute points and arguments otherwise leave emotional bias out of it. Once again as long as he is in the starting 11 and is a Chelsea player I am supporting him because I want Chelsea to do good so it only makes sense I want him to do good, but is he irreplaceable and grade A Chelsea material? No I don't agree with that and if the right offer comes where we can upgrade I am for it. Not having irrational bias for him doesn't mean I hate the guy.
Pavel Permiachkin
Another Mikel argument. I have joined this website since 2010 and there is at least 1 Mikel argument once a week. That should make it at least 212th Mikel argument I have seen on this website. If it is 2 times a week, that makes it the 414th Mikel argument. Can't remember a time one player was argued about more than 200 times in my life. Aren't you pro-Mikel and no-Mikel boys tired of talking of someone that will likely finish his contract here whether as a bench warmer or grass cutter or starter?
KAKUfrank
Ehhh I don't think that is the issue on hand Mr. Righteous.
Pavel Permiachkin
Saw in a paper (forgot d name)couple of days back dat lukaku myt b used as part of d deal 2bring diego costa 2d bridge prolly in summer.hw true is this pls? Can any1 shed any light on dis piece of info?
Bluegiant
@Kaku, Well with the heading of the article and the body of it all am surprised you thought such argument will never arise. it will be short-sighted if you did. Am with @anoruo on this, mikel has been tested for several years and i won't be too quick to pick matic over him. Saying that, i love matic display yesterday, showing aggressiveness, taking initiative and so on. All in All it was a very good debut performance. And i agree when it comes to competition for places, its mikel who has to be jittery (though why should he be, if he has been here since the days of ballack, deco, essien, maka...)
kolagold25
@bluegiant, well this is just first of many you would hear about. The papers will come up with all kinds (Atleast they've got to sell) just don't be too quick to believe it all else you might end up a frustrated one :-) My 2cents.
kolagold25
Lukaku needs to settle at one club. If that's Atletico then good for him.
foreign_viewer
Lukaku fixed him self in the media after Mou put him on the spot so prolly not true. F_V, do you ever answer questions?
Pavel Permiachkin
I'm not interested in discussing neither Mikel nor Matic. I want to see a player like Pirlo and Yaya in deep midfield. Now there are three plodders in there.
foreign_viewer
Foreign troll at it again. Must be compensating for something.
LABison
Matic is good (too early to say great). Mikel isn't leaving. Luiz isn't leaving. Lampard should leave for the good of the team. - My humble opinions
don delsy
I dunno,I fink wiff all dats happened(kdb n especially mata's sale to our rivals) anytin is possible.but time will tell.
Bluegiant
I hope Mourihno doesn't break my heart wit Luiz as he did wit Mata. I want Luiz to stay with us, I really think he's good enough and he loves Chelsea. We need to keep players that truely play for the club.
manzo2k6
f_v, Pirlo is a first class regista or deep-lying playmaker (CM) while Yaya is also a CM but a big adventurous marauding box-to-box one, who just happens to know where the goal is either owing to raw talent, years of practice or experience, or a combination of these - in the La Liga and now the 'small matter' of the Premier League! Once we get our hands on a good enough regista, and Matic racks up a couple more years under his belt, you'll be acting the right plodder on here eating your careless random words carelessly. FYI, an adventurous "unshackled" Matic plus a Gudogan, Rakitic or Cabaye = Pirlo and Yaya - that's a ball-playing CM(regista) plus a B2B CM - 2 'undefensive' CMs and no DM for the all necessary defensive cover, which isn't necessarily good enough for most oppositions you'll find in the PL or on the continent! Hence even Citeh employs Yaya and Fernandinho - 1 B2B CM and a fecking tough-tackling DM! Fergie had Scholes(CM) and Keane(DM), check; Wenger, Viera(B2B CM) and Gilberto(DM), and nowadays Arteta/Rosicky(CMs) and Ramsey/Flamini(B2B CM/DM respectively), check; Mourinho, Ballack/Deco(CMs) and Makelele/Essien(DM/B2B CM respectively), and later Alonso/Modric(CMs) and Khedira(B2B CM) @Real, check; Pep, Xavi(CM) and Busquest(DM), and later Lahm/Alcantara/Bastian(CMs) and Martinez/Kroos(DM/B2B CM respectively) @Bayern, check; Klopp, Gundogan/Sahin(CMs) and Bender(DM), check; eh, instances abound that invalidates your CM+CM dream or want, and they all prove that that weird combination is rare and almost alien to the modern game! Yaya(the way he now plays) and Pirlo cannot and will not happen in football. Just so you know.
HGH Magic
*invalidate....
HGH Magic
Ok...lets go over this again...I just don't see either Lampard, Mikel or Ramires as starters. Now that Matic has arrived, there is no need to play Mikel, at all, other than to give Matic a day off. Then if Chalobah becomes a 1st team player there is no need for Mikel at all. This is not to slag off Mikel, he is a good player..but he is not better than Matic..for God's sake that is why CFC purchased him. And if it comes down to either Mikel or Chaloubah..there is no question Chaloubah is going to stick over Mikel. As far as Ramires, I love the guy but IMO he is not a starter. Now if I want to mark a strong opposition player, then I want Ramires on him. I want Ramires on the team but used properly.. He needs to be a defensive specialist or should come in off the bench to protect the lead.
lamarochs
Lama who then if Ramires is not a starter?
Pavel Permiachkin
Pavel - My primary issue with Ramires is that he plays out of position in the 4-2-3-1. He is not a DM and he is not a natural winger. He is best in a 4-3-3 where he can burst forward. If CFC continues with the 4-2-3-1 I don't want him anywhere near the pivot as he can't distribute the ball. Same with Lampard. He shouldn't be in the 4-2-3-1 as Lampard is too slow and can't defend. If JM is going to stick with the 4-2-3-1 then CFC needs a passer/playmaker that can defend. THAT player is not on this current team. If he wants to go with a 4-3-3 then he can start either Lampard or Ramires in the midfield but not together. But getting back to your question...I will concede you are correct..It looks as if either Lampard or Ramires will have to start with Matic until someone to fit the passing/playmaking role is filled or until a academy player that may fit that role is brought forward.
lamarochs
Mikel, Matic and Lampard are slow. One player like this is enough, but three? Two have to go. There's Fernando of Porto who is a real DM. Matic can be like Ballack if he's not shackled like Mikel is.
foreign_viewer
In: Koke, Gundogan and Fernando. Out: Mikel and Lampard.
foreign_viewer
Did foreign just say "Mikel - OUT"????? Please pinch me, this has got to be a dream!!!! LOL!
Tunez
Tunez, told you this erratic keyboard-happy guy(girl?) flip-flops and types unguarded random statements before thinking just to 'test the waters', as it were. Take him(her) seriously next time at your own expense mate. LOLest ;)
HGH Magic
U all too quick to forget van Ginkel. He has the biggest potential to build a mouthwatering partnership with Matic...
Chelsea n Torres Fan
@chelsea n torres fan, MVG right? i think he will end up going on loan next season.
kolagold25
I am sorry to say, but MVG really had tough luck with that injury of his. It is terrible when such a young player gets injured like that because it can really slow down his development and career. I hope I am proven wrong, but it might be that his Chelsea career will stop even before it really kicked off. Developed MVG and Matic sounds really good on paper though..
zg2000fs
FIFO.
foreign_viewer
HGH, LoooooooooooooooLz!!!!! I know right. hehehe
Tunez
I think many of you guys are just dead wrong on this Matic issue. (my opinion begins here, so if you want to be contentious, just stop reading now) First off, Matic, in my view, is not a "Makelele" type defender. To me, he is a more complete player. We keep using this term "holding" midfielder, but a holding midfielder does one thing, and one thing only. He HOLDS up the midfield, and covers the back four. (in our case) He never ventures, he never leaves his zone. And quite frankly, it's a ***** way to play. In a true pivot, either player is allowed to wander, and the other in the pivot falls back to cover. But you already knew this, right? It's supposed to be a position of great flexibility, while maintaing a rigid standard - but it's up to the player(s) in the role to make the decision. You can't play a pivot by remote control, like you can a "holding" midfielder. You give the player freedom, and utilize their talent. That being said, some of you are SO short-sighted. MVG is one of the most interesting prospects next to Matic, but there is one even more so. That is the all but forgotten Oriol Romeu. This kid has been almost scintillating this season at Valencia. And I want him to come back! Matic is not just a left footed Mikel. He's got attributes that Mikel does not have. His passing is far superior, and he seems to have better vision at reading the attack. Some of his interceptions were just too good. One in particular, where he came across the back of the player, and took the ball right off of the receiving foot, as the player was about to turn out. Daring, but not reckless. He seems to have a very good grasp on when to hold up play, and when to commit to the challenge. More games will show this further. It isn't something that shows up in a debut, and just mysteriously disappears. It only gets better. That being said, I still can't fathom the Lampard haters. Lampard's qualities are not allowed to show when we play our current formation. Lampard is never going to go forward in a Ramires pivot, as he doesn't have the pace. Ramires doesn't have the passing quality, or the finishing skills of Lampard. And Ramires is always going to embark on a foot race. (which he'll almost always win, and then throw away a good chance to finish or assist) When Lampard has a good partner in the pivot, he become almost lethal. Lampard is still one of the best finishers from range in the league. And when he has the right partnership, his stats spike, in the area of shots attempted, shots on target, and goals scored. Yeah, he's slow. Lampard was never a speed demon, though. We've got enough speed in this squad to compensate, and let this old dog do what he's good at. Ease up. We have bigger problems than Lampard. I've said too much already...
solid7
 

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