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Nigerian pleased to be picking up less cards...

John Obi Mikel feels that his disciplinary record at Chelsea has improved considerably recently and puts it down to having properly adjusted to the pace of the Premier League at last.

The Nigerian has now not collected a red card for two years and has only been booked twice this season whilst in action for the Blues.

That is in vast contrast to his early years at Stamford Bridge, when he was sent off four times and frequently booked.

"English football is always something crazy and, when you come into the Premier League, you must adapt to it somehow," said Mikel, according to Press Association Sport.

"I guess the timing of those tackles was the area I had to improve and I think I've dealt really well with it.

"I think it was the hunger I had for the games, the enthusiasm, that meant I did not know how to restrict myself from going into tackles at the wrong moment.

"It took me a bit of time to get used to things but now it has been two years with no red cards and I hope I can continue like that.

"I always try to keep my aggression but not get booked. But when you play in the position I play, sometimes you have to commit because the team will be in danger if you don't."

Meanwhile, Mikel is keen for the Blues to win the FA Cup again this season.

That would be his third winners' medal in the competition and the final at Wembley is always an occasion he relishes.

"I want to do well because I always want to win," he added.

"But maybe the final feels a bit more special and a good performance there shows people how much you want to win the trophy.

"The game is the really special part of the day if you get to the FA Cup final.

"That's what leads you to winning the trophy and everything else comes from that - the build-up and the celebrations just make it more special. I think playing the FA Cup, whatever round you are in, always feels very special."

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