No revenge for Villas-Boas as Mata fires Chelsea
Roberto Di Matteo's side were in danger of suffering their first league defeat of the season at the hands of former boss Villas-Boas, who was sacked after just nine months in charge last season, as Tottenham took a 2-1 lead in the second half at White Hart Lane.
But Spanish midfielder Mata struck twice in the space of three minutes to secure Chelsea's seventh win from eight league matches.
William Gallas equalised against his former club two minutes into the second half when the Tottenham defender nodded in from close-range after Jan Vertonghen hooked the ball across the six-yard box.
And Spurs went in front seven minutes later thanks to Jermain Defoe's predatory finish from Aaron Lennon's cross.
However, Chelsea staged a stunning fightback as Mata punished a half clearance from Gallas to slot home in the 66th minute and the Spaniard then produced a fine finish from Eden Hazard's defence-splitting pass three minutes later.
Second placed Manchester United, at home to Stoke, and third placed Manchester City, away at West Bromwich Albion, can close the gap on Chelsea back to four points later on Saturday.
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