1. EDEN HAZARD (8.7)
This is Hazard’s team-leading third Man of the Match award, which is even more impressive considering that it was only his seventh start of the season after missing most of the first two months while still recovering from his broken ankle.
And the thing is, Hazard could’ve been even better! Also, please continue to take (more) shots! Thank you.
The Independent’s new chief football writer, Jonathan Liew posed the question recently: does Hazard make Chelsea tick or does he only play well when the team plays well? While it’s a bit of a chicken-and-egg situation, and Hazard, like any player has good and bad days, games like this one should make the answer land firmly in the camp of Eden Hazard FC.
2. CÉSAR AZPILICUETA (8.0)
If Eden’s the flash, Dave’s the rock solid foundation — or at least a big part of the rock solid foundation — upon which the brilliance of players like Hazard are able to shine.
Azpi had had a couple subpart outings, but a nice rest midweek has seemingly done wonders and he was back to his best in this one.
3. ANTONIO RÜDIGER (7.8)
After Hazard, the next four highest rated players were the four central defensive players, including Azpi, Rudi, Courtois (7.4) and David Luiz (7.1). But as well as Rüdiger has done, he’s more likely to displace Azpilicueta at the moment (with Azpi helping to deputize at right wing-back while Moses remains injured) than Cahill, who had started 9 of the previous 10 games.
STARTERS: Courtois (7.4), Rüdiger (7.8), David Luiz (7.1), Azpilicueta (8.0), Alonso (6.4), Fàbregas (6.7), Bakayoko (6.5), Zappacosta (6.9), Hazard (8.7), Morata (6.9), Pedro (6.9)
SUBSTITUTES: Drinkwater (6.7), Batshuayi (6.2), Willian (6.0)