THE DATA DAY: TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR V CHELSEA
In a game with a high number of turnovers, it was the Blues who made the better use of our opportunities at the weekend...
The most striking stat to start with is that Spurs attempted 26 shots to Chelsea's 10, and were on target with 10 to our seven, but efficiency was lacking for the hosts, and we made seven successful blocks to their none - goalscorer Gary Cahill making three and Branislav Ivanovic two as Jermain Defoe and co. were given little space to operate. Tottenham's 26 and 10 were the highest of any opponent this season.
Chelsea enjoyed 58 per cent possession, but only 46 per cent territory, and it is worth noting that John Mikel Oi completed more passes than any other player on the day, with Spurs frequently sat too deep to effectively pressure Chelsea's midfield.
The midfielder found a blue shirt on 56 occasions from 64 efforts, while Cahill made 53 out of 57 passes successfully. The top eight passers on the day were all Chelsea men, reflecting the possession stats and also our 85 per cent success rate with passes compared to Tottenham's 81.
Steven Caulker was their top passer with 34 from 37, though eight were back to Brad Friedel,and their top six were all defensively-minded players.
In the nine minutes from the start of the second half to Tottenham's second goal, we misplaced 13 passes. In the remaining 40, including injury time, only 28 were off target.
It wasn't really a day for Chelsea's dribblers, with Juan Mata and Eden Hazard far more effective with their passing and shooting. Neither player beat another once, while Tottenham's impressive Aaron Lennon was dribble king with five successful take-ons out of seven, one of which produced Defoe's goal. Hazard was none from five.
Where we were successful was in winning the ball back. Mikel won five of five tackles and Ramires from from four. Even Mata, hardly renowned for his defensive work, won three from four, the last producing our fourth and decisive goal. Sandro was Tottenham's most effective in this area with four from six.
With strikes in either half, we have now scored in the last 11 halves of football we have played. The last goalless 45 minutes came in the first half against Stoke at Stamford Bridge on September 22.
Juan Mata now has six goals from five games, with two against Spurs matched by a brace against Nordsjaelland, one against Arsenal and another past Wolves.