Arsene Wenger was at pains to state that Arsenal’s Capital One Cup defeat to Chelsea did not reveal a lack of depth in his squad’s strength.
But the fact that Arsenal deployed a team bereft of big-name players, while Chelsea could afford the luxury of recalling a host of established internationals to their starting line-up, spoke volumes.
Chelsea have now beaten Manchester City and the Gunners in quick succession- the two teams many pundits regard as the Blues’ main competitors for the Premier League title- and so have been boosted in the context of the long battle for glory this season.
When players like Brazilian internationals David Luiz and Willian and Spanish internationals Juan Mata and Cesar Azpilicueta are your second string, you know you have a squad that can go the distance.
It was the Spanish duo that saw Chelsea progress to the last-eight of the Cup at the expense of their London neighbours.
And Mata was rightly pleased that he and Azpilicueta served up another reminder of their value to Chelsea’s cause.
“…..Today I'm more happy for Cesar, to be honest. He trains more than anyone and he fully deserves the goal and the celebration more than anything," Mata told Sky Sports.
Regarding his own infuriating status as a fringe player at Stamford Bridge, Mata continues to remain diplomatic.
"I just try to play, and enjoy my football," he added.
"The manager is the one who makes the decisions, but I always try my best for this club and that's what I'll always do. Today I enjoyed it, and I felt proud for the fans, but I'm really happy for Cesar."
Meanwhile, Chelsea are rightly chuffed that their team appears to be growing in strength as the season progresses.
Speaking on behalf of manager Jose Mourinho, assistant Steve Holland said that with their eyes on a barrage of trophies, all of Chelsea’s daunting squad will be needed to chip in at some stage this season.
"We do need a squad to compete in the four competitions," he said.
"What appears to be the starting team that's preferred now won't be the team that is preferred in January which will be different again to the team that is preferred in March, April or May.
"We need everybody and tonight, on the back of Sunday against Manchester City, was great example of players showing they are ready for that challenge."