Mata, Torres shine for Chelsea – but will Mourinho notice?
Defoe and Jovetic score as Premier League's forgotten stars get run-out in Capital One Cup
CHELSEA'S forgotten World and European Cup winners, Fernando Torres and Juan Mata, were given a rare chance to impress Blues boss Jose Mourinho as the Premier League's reserves got a run-out in the Capital One Cup.
The pair were impressive as Chelsea overcame League One Swindon 2-0 in the third round of the competition, with Torres getting on the scoresheet and Mata pulling the strings.
But the Blues' victory was tempered by injuries to midfielders Marco van Ginkel, who appears to have a serious knee problem, and Ramires, who limped off at half-time. Both will miss the match against Spurs this weekend.
For Mata and Torres, Swindon could represent a "turning point" in their efforts to make sure of a place in the Spanish World Cup squad next summer, says the Daily Telegraph.
However, not everyone believes the Special One will recognise the talents of his forgotten stars.
"Mourinho had presented this tie as Mata's opportunity to play himself back into his regular starting line-up, an offer which seemed disingenuous at best," claims The Times. "This was no laboratory trial, but more like presenting an accomplished violinist with a cello to play at an orchestral audition."
Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas also gave some of his second-string players a run-out as they thrashed Aston Villa 4-0, with Jermain Defoe, who has yet to start a Premier League match this season, scoring twice.
Newly-arrived winger Nacer Chadli scored his first goal for Tottenham and German midfielder Lewis Holtby also shone.
There was evidence of the strength in depth available to Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini as he handed a home debut to £22m signing Stevan Jovetic. He responded with two goals in a 5-0 mauling of Wigan, the side that stunned City in the FA Cup Final last season.
"The victory made it three in succession for City, who followed the 3-0 victory at Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League and the emphatic win in the 166th Manchester derby by progressing to the next round of the Capital One Cup, a competition even the second-string that started would have a realistic chance of winning," notes The Guardian. ·