Ramires may face a battle to regain his spot in the Chelsea starting XI when he returns from suspension, after David Luiz shone alongside Nemanja Matic in the 6-0 defeat of Arsenal.
It was only the second time that the moonlighting central-defender had played alongside the January addition in midfield, but the pairing once again ran the show in a huge game.
The duo raked the Gunners with seven accurate long balls apiece as Chelsea counter-attacked with the rapier-like incisiveness.
Luiz handled the dirty side of business, making a game-high four tackles and winning a brace of aerial duels.
His contribution allowed his partner in crime to run the game, making a team-high 70 passes as he created four goalscoring chances, two of which were converted.
Destinies forever entwined by Matic’s status as the makeweight in the deal that brought Luiz to west London from Benfica, the pair had previously formed the platform when the Blues stunned Manchester City at the Etihad in February.
Ramires may be one of Jose Mourinho’s most trusted foot soldiers, with only four players making more league starts under the Portuguese, yet he was shunted out to the right-wing to accommodate his countryman against City.
Chelsea are 11/25 to keep their feet on the necks of their pursuers with victory at Crystal Palace in their next league game and it looks a good thing given the Eagles have taken just four points against top-half opposition this term.
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It remains to be seen whether the Special One will keep faith with Luiz at Selhurst Park but it would be a big surprise if he fails to usurp Ramires once more when the Blues visit Anfield for a potentially title-deciding fixture in late April.