Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho hints at return to first team for Juan Mata

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho hints that Juan Mata could be close to returning to the first team following numerous stints on the bench.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has suggested that Juan Mata could find his way back into the first team in the near future.

The Spain international has been demoted to the bench on a number of occasions under Mourinho, who publicly claimed that the 25-year-old needs to change his game in order to secure a starting place.

With Oscar chosen as Mourinho's number 10, Mata, who played in the Blues' League Cup win over Swindon Town, recently claimed that he is willing to switch positions in order to fit into the Portuguese manager's system.

"I liked the way Juan Mata played against Swindon," Mourinho said in a news conference. "His attitude is very good and his effort was good. When in a player makes an effort to come in my direction then I go to him as well.

"I can imagine from now him working into my way of thinking and I think the natural tendency will for him to be in the team."

Chelsea will take on Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane tomorrow afternoon.

Chelsea's Juan Mata in action against Everton on May 19, 2013
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1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
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9Everton2376102538-1327
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16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
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20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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