Juan Mata has been named the Barclays Premier League Player of the Month for October.
The Spaniard has been in excellent form recently and has rightly been recognised after a run of seven goals in as many games across all competitions, including league strikes against Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester United, and a string of assists that make him the division’s top creator over the past year.
Mata ended last season as the first player to win the club’s Player of the Year award in his debut season since Ruud Gullit, and after a summer schedule that included Euro 2012 and Olympic Games duty, he was allowed a short break by manager Roberto Di Matteo before returning to Chelsea duty and forging an effective relationship alongside Oscar and Eden Hazard in behind the striker.
It is the first time Mata has won the award, and he becomes the first Chelsea player to do so since David Luiz in March 2011.
‘I’m very grateful for this award. It’s very important to keep going and improve because I am still young,’ the 24-year-old said. ‘The most important thing is the team and I am always trying to do my best to help the team.’
You can hear more from Juan discussing his award tonight in ‘Blues News’ on Chelsea TV, with his full interview with Pat Nevin on ‘Matchnight Live’ before tomorrow night’s game against Shakhtar Donetsk.