Football

Nemanja Matic has been a key feature under Antonio Conte so far this season.

Nemanja Matic reveals what caused Chelsea's thrashing of Manchester United

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Chelsea appeared to have found their new 'Special One' when they came out of August with three wins from three Premier League matches under new boss Antonio Conte.

However, that fine start the campaign was followed up by a draw at Swansea and defeats to both Liverpool and Arsenal.

Three first-half goals from Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil completely blew away Chelsea at the Emirates - inflicting back-to-back league defeats on the west Londoners.

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And it was at that moment that Blues midfielder Nemanja Matic admits caused Conte's men to seriously sit up and realise that the new campaign could quickly turn as sour as last campaign, if they didn't quickly turn results around.

While form was never a real worry, Conte's men had to re-find the way they were surging up the table early on and their convincing 4-0 win over Manchester United on Sunday did exactly that, by returning the Blues to the top four.

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But perhaps Jose Mourinho's Stamford Bridge reunion would have been somewhat different, had Chelsea not been fired up in the manner that they were following defeat to their local rivals.

Wake-up call

As per the Daily Mail, Matic confessed: "You know sometimes you need to lose the game to wake up.

"The Arsenal game was a wake-up call for us. We knew that we had to do better, to want more, and we did that.

Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League

"It's easy to say we needed to work harder but after Arsenal we knew we had to show that we had quality, and we have done that in the last three games. We have showed quality, we don't concede, and we score goals."

Chelsea became an embarrassment last season, which was epitomised by their lowly position just outside the relegation zone prior to Christmas and Mourinho subsequently being sacked.

But Matic believes any hangover from the previous campaign has been quashed by the nature of Sunday's win, and Chelsea are on their way to becoming a formidable force once again.

Chelsea can compete

"This was a moment to show we can compete with every team." the 28-year-old added.

"I'm very happy because of that. Of course we don't forget that we lost against Arsenal, against Liverpool. But of course the table shows that we are there, we are near.

Arsenal v Chelsea - Premier League

"We will try and continue like this. I think at the moment we are playing very good. It's not easy to win 4-0 against a strong team like Manchester is. We won a big game."

A calamitous error at the back for United saw the Blues take the lead within 30 seconds through Pedro, while Gary Cahill doubled the lead midway through the half, before Eden Hazard and N'Golo Kante got on the scoresheet in the second period.

While it was not an afternoon that Mourinho will savour in his managerial career, Conte has now built a solid platform from which his Chelsea side can build, and are just a point off top spot after nine games of the season.

Was Chelsea's thrashing of Manchester United enough to prove that they can win the Premier League title this season? Have your say in the comment box below.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Diego Costa
Chelsea
Nemanja Matic
Manchester United
Eden Hazard
Jose Mourinho

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