Amid the chaos of Chelsea’s disappoint 2-2 draw with Arsenal on Tuesday night, it was worth noting that Mason Mount was dropped to the bench for the fixture.
The 21-year-old had started nine of the previous 10 Premier League games, but manager Frank Lampard named him as a substitute for the London derby at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea twice blew an advantage to end up drawing against 10-man Arsenal and they continue to loosen their grip on fourth in the table.
Mount was introduced to the action in the 69th minute at a time when the Blues were searching for a winner, but he made very little impact on proceedings and lacked the creative spark.
His cameo performance in the second-half only highlighted the fact that he’s out of form and he’s entered his first rut as a senior player at his boyhood club.
The England international has five goals and three assists to his name this campaign, but has found it much more difficult in the past couple of months and appears to have run out of steam.
Lampard has made the right decision to pull him out of the firing line and giving teammate Ross Barkley more of a chance in a creative midfield role could work.
But there is no reason for the manager to lose faith in him completely and he could still be important in the second half of the campaign.
Mount, who earns £77,000-a-week (Telegraph), is playing in his first season of Premier League football and any critics need to take that into consideration.
The attacking midfielder may need a little bit of time to reset, but he’s a super talent that is still enjoying a great senior breakthrough year and he will recover his form at some stage.
It was inevitable that at some point he would hit his first bump in the road in Chelsea’s senior group and it’s about how the academy graduate does respond.