Although Fernando Torres scored a brace as the Blues completed their first win under the command of interim manager Rafael Benitez, it was Mata who controlled the tempo of the game and who was also dangerous with his corners, free-kicks, through-balls, efficient dribbling and constant shooting.
However, the home side also benefitted from the failure of the Danish side to stick to their markers and their regular lapses in concentration.
But the result was not a foregone conclusion until Nordsjaelland seemingly switched off after scoring their only goal at the start of the second half.
ESPNSTAR.com studies the final Champions League game to have taken place at Stamford Bridge this season and, in a game that also saw three penalties, finds that Chelsea can get back to their best if they maintain the same level of confidence as displayed on Wednesday night.
Unlike against West Ham, the central defence was tidy with their clearances and the full-backs tracked back quickly enough to help put a stop to the visitrors' counter-attacks. Gary Cahill and David Luiz both scored goals and the Englishman must be rightly aggrieved for being penalised for handball when both the contact and the location of the incident appeared suspect.
Only Branislav Ivanovic could be faulted for his performance as he did not anticipate a rapid-fire Nordsjaelland attack immediately after the restart, allowing Joshua John to score the only goal past an otherwise resolute Petr Cech.
Cech - 7.5 | Ivanovic - 7 | Luiz - 8.5 | Cahill - 8 | Cole (off 60') - 8
Bearing in mind that they were not facing a midfield gifted with technique or combativeness, the Chelsea midfield's excellent showing should be analysed with care. In this regard, Eden Hazard repeatedly tried to cross from the left with the outside of his right foot, Oriol Romeu's passes were not always accurate and Ramires did not close down his opponents effectively.
It did not prove decisive, however, as they produced an improved performance in the second half. Their passing - both in terms of diversity and accuracy - increased with every goal and Hazard, in particular, showed a vestige of the flair that allowed him to make such a strong start to the season a couple of months back.
Mata, as outlined earlier, was the star of the night, though, as he always identified the right pass and scored a goal for himself as well. He was integral to every Chelsea attack and will likely be earning a pat on the back from his beleaguered manager.
Moses - 8 | Romeu - 7.5 | Ramires (off 65') - 7.5 | Mata (off 74') - 9 | Hazard - 8
Torres put in a good shift and was confident whenever the ball was sent in his direction. He chased down through-balls and chested down long balls with ease and showed a willingness to use his superior agility to carve out space for himself.
He also had the confidence to execute a Rabona pass and was lively throughout the game. The only disappointing point of note was his tendency to fall easily under the slightest of pressures and thus some extra weight training, as suggested by coach Benitez recently, might be justified.
Torres - 8
Ryan Bertrand was quietly impressive down the left flank and Oscar continued his rich vein of form in Europe with yet another goal after making a smart run into the box when he spotted a defender out of position. Furthermore, it was nice to see Paulo Ferreira finally get his first start of the season as the long-serving Blues defender deserves more than an ignominous exile from the first-team setup.
Bertrand (on 60') - 7.5 | Oscar (on 65') - 8 | Ferreira (on 74') - N/A
Goalkeeper Jesper Hansen was the only player who tried to limit the damage, despite what the lopsided scoreline might suggest. The rest of the defence was either too slow or failed to notice the runs of many a Chelsea player.
Hansen - 6.5 | Parkhurst - 6 | Mtiliga - 4 | Tičinović (off 64') - 4 | Runje (off 9') - N/A
Except for John's clinical finish 25 seconds into the second half, the rest of the midfield were uninspired and too scrappy with their challenges throughout the game. Captain Nicolai Stokholm should also have buried the spot-kick opportunity when it came his way in the 32nd minute as it could have really changed the complexion of the game. He was lucky that Hazard similarly missed an opportunity to put Chelsea ahead a few minutes away but Luiz was far more disciplined than the duo and bured his shot with ease.
Gundelach - 5 | Lorentzen - 6.5 | Stokholm - 5 | Adu - 5 | Christiansen (off 61') - 5.5 | John - 6.5
A superb punt forward by Kasper Lorentzen was the only real contribution that the lone forward made and he could not combine too well with Mikkel Beckmann when the latter came on as well.
Lorentzen - 6
None of the substitutes managed to provide much of an impact on the game for the visiting side.
Beckmann (on 9') - 5.5 | Kildentoft (on 61') - 5 | Issah (on 64') - 5