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Chelsea vs. Watford, Player Ratings: Hello and goodbye, Man of the Match Diego Costa

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Minutes played90
Fouls drawn3
Fouls committed3
It took almost half the season, but last year's instant cult hero Diego Costa has finally climbed back to the top of the player ratings podium.  His two goals nearly doubled his total output in the Premier League for the season.  He has six in all competitions.

Welcome back, Diego Costa.  And also, goodbye Diego Costa, at least for the next match.  The Diego Costa hat-trick:  two goals and a yellow card.  (Maybe we should've given him the actual hat-trick by letting him take the penalty kick, no?)

With the automatic one-match suspension for his fifth yellow of the season, Costa has played his final match of 2015.  The year's been one to largely forget, personally, despite the two Chelsea trophies.  After a tremendous start, which included a brace at Swansea in January, the striker has struggled for goals for much of the calendar year, for both club and country.

Hopefully Saturday's performance is a sign of things to come in the new year, rather than a memory of things that used to be once upon a time.

2. WILLIAN - AMR 7.0
Minutes played90
One player who's not struggled much at all during 2015 is Willian.

Many questioned his spot in the starting lineup after his big money transfer in 2013, but all he's done since is oust every other candidate for the Chelsea right wing spot.  Mata, De Bruyne, Schürrle, Salah, Cuadrado have all been vanquished like a pride of lions.

This season, Willian has even added a bit of final product to his game as well, scoring plenty of free kicks, taking excellent set pieces, and providing gorgeous assists like this one for Costa's second goal on Saturday.

3. MIKEL - MC 7.0
Minutes played45
Just barely missing out on second spot is old solider John Obi Mikel.  (Actually, only 28 still.)

Alongside Branislav Ivanovic and John Terry, he's the last remaining player from Guus Hiddink's first interim era, so perhaps the new man in charge trusts him implicitly.  Mikel played a key role in Hiddink's 4-3-3s in 2009; it would not be surprising to see that happen again this time around.

This was also Mikel's 350th appearance for Chelsea Football Club, becoming only the 21st player in our 110-year history to reach that milestone.  Congrats!

Courtois (6.3), Azpilicueta (6.3), Terry (6.3), Cahill (5.6), Ivanović (5.3), Matić (4.8), Fàbregas (4.6), Pedro (6.0), Oscar (5.3), Willian (7.0), Costa (8.1)

Mikel (7.0), Hazard (6.5)


2015-16 player ratings watford H

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