Cesc Fabregas again impressed when given a starting place for Chelsea at the weekend, scoring in their 3-1 victory over Swansea.
The reminder of his ability came amid continued speculation over his long-term future – and on Monday, Manchester United became the latest club to be linked with him.
Despite not being a first-team regular under boss Antonio Conte this season, Fabregas, 29, has nevertheless played some part in the vast majority of Chelsea’s 102 Premier League matches since his move to Stamford Bridge in 2014 – he has not appeared in just 14 of them.
The Blues are unbeaten in those 14 games, and if statistics are to believed, Chelsea are still a better team without Fabregas.
Stats obtained by Opta for fantasy football game Oulala.com reveal Chelsea have won a much higher percentage of matches, registering far more points per game, without the midfielder.
When he has played, Chelsea have scored slightly more goals per game, although they have conceded far more too.
In Chelsea’s 14 Premier League matches without Fabregas, dating back to 2014, the Blues have won 12, drawn two and lost none, picking up an average of 2.7 points per game. They have also conceded five goals, an average of just 0.4 per game.
When Fabregas plays, Chelsea score an average of 0.1 more goals per match. But their win rate drops massively to just 52%, compared to 86% without him.
Under Conte this season, Fabregas has missed nine league games. Chelsea have won all nine, scoring 24 goals and conceding just two.