Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that Gary Cahill will be rested against Crystal Palace, while Bertrand will need one more week to return to training.
Chelsea head into their next fixture against Crystal Palace, a side which haven’t managed to beat the Blues in their last 11 meetings. Jose Mourinho looked back at his previous tenure in charge of the club and recalled his side’s success during this busy period of the calendar. The London club will face five more matches before the end of this month and Mourinho stressed on the importance of resting the players and rotating the squad. The Portuguese manager also revealed that Gary Cahill, who also missed out the midweek Champions League clash, will be rested for this match.
“I remember that we were successful in this period, we didn’t lose matches and we had a few consecutive victories. I can remember that it was a successful period. We have to try to do the same, we know it’s difficult, but it’s difficult for us and everybody else.
“It’s important to try not to kill some players by playing them in every minute of every game, even if they are important players for the team. My experience says it’s important sometimes to give them a break and try to keep them in good condition.
“It’s such a big accumulation of matches so it’s important to try to keep them in good condition. I don’t risk players so Cahill tomorrow is not involved. Is he injured? No, but he’s almost injured, so we decided to kill the ‘almost’ and protect the little pain he’s feeling in his quadriceps.” – The Chelsea manager said.
Mourinho also revealed that Ashley Cole will drop back to the bench for this game after featuring against Steaua Bucuresti as Cesar Azpilicueta will start at left-back. The England international is expected to return in their next match against Sunderland. Ryan Bertrand, whose last appearance for the club was in the 0-2 win over Arsenal in the league cup, will need one more week to return to training.
“I need the team to change, I need fresh people, I need Azpilicueta to play tomorrow and Ashley to be fresh to play at Sunderland
“I’m not saying we have a compromise on that, I’m not saying it’s a law that in this period it’s one or the other one, I trust both and I choose the one I think is better for the occasion. It’s good to have options.
“Bertrand’s injured, he’s been out of training for about two weeks and will probably need one more I guess, something like that.” – Mourinho added.
Marco van Ginkel is the only long term injury concern for the club at the moment.
Expected starting line-up against Crystal Palace (4-2-3-1): Cech (GK); Ivanovic, Luiz, Terry, Azpilicueta; Ramires, Lampard; Hazard, Oscar, Mata; Torres