Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata has labelled the Blues' upcoming UEFA Champions League clash with Shakhtar Donetsk as "like a final."
Roberto Di Matteo’s side was outplayed by a rampant Shakhtar two weeks ago, but Mata is aiming for a positive result at Stamford Bridge to send Chelsea back to the top of Group E and avoid a scenario in which the defending UCL champions are fighting for survival.
"It's time to move on and to focus on the Champions League match this Wednesday. It's like a final for us if we want to finish first in our group," he wrote on his official website. "Besides, in Ukraine, Shakhtar proved to be a top team who are able to beat anyone. Even so, we always have a great support at the Bridge and I'm confident that we will get a victory to face the last two games in a good position. Champions League's nights at the Bridge are always special."
The Oviedo academy graduate also explained the reasons behind his exclusion from the squad that faced Swansea at the weekend, citing both fatigue and hamstring troubles.
"After such a huge effort during 120 minutes I was forced to rest a few days with a hamstring injury," Mata said. "That's why I missed our game in Wales vs Swansea."