Previous
Atletico Madrid
Malmo FF
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Olympiakos
Juventus
Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Liverpool
Real Madrid
Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Ludogorets Razgrad
FC Basel
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
AS Monaco
Benfica
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayer Leverkusen
Zenit St Petersburg
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Anderlecht
Arsenal
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Galatasaray
Borussia Dortmund
ESPN3 Oct 22, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Next

Remy set for spell out with groin injury

Chelsea 9 hours ago
Read
ChelseaChelsea
NK MariborNK Maribor
6
0
FT
Game Details
 By PA Sport
Aug 15, 2014

Mourinho resting World Cup stars

The ESPN FC panel favours Chelsea to win the Premier League title.

World Cup fatigue will stop Chelsea from fielding their strongest lineup for the first three matches of the new season, according to Jose Mourinho.

The Chelsea boss will not rush his six World Cup stars, who have had precious little club preparation, back into Premier League action.

Germany's Andre Schurrle, Brazil trio Oscar, Willian and Ramires and Belgian pair Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois have missed most of Chelsea's preseason after their World Cup exploits.

Mourinho admitted being forced to wait patiently while a host of senior stars shake off their summer exertions is simply a fact of football life.

Eden Hazard is one-of-six Chelsea players who won't be available for Chelsea in their first games of the 2014-15 Premier League season.

"This is modern football," Mourinho said ahead of Monday night's trip to Burnley. "It's going in this tendency -- more matches, more competitions, less time to work, even not enough time to have a real holiday for bodies and brains that top football players need. There's not enough time.

"In our case we had a group that had good holiday and a good pre-season, then we had another group because Spain was out in the group phase, and that allowed us to get five players before we expected.

"So that was good and created a medium group -- but the final group is very late.

Mourinho went on to say that many of his side's players were not individually ready, but that the team would still be ready for their Monday match vs. Burnley. 

The Portuguese manager admitted he will have his work cut out to appease rival goalkeepers Courtois and Petr Cech, but vowed to foster competition between the duo.

PREMIER LEAGUE PREVIEW

- Dall: Premier League Spotlight
- Premier League team news
- Showdown: Predict the scores
- Fantasy Focus: Team of the Month
- Fantasy game: Sign up now
- PickCenter: Choose your bets

The Stamford Bridge boss said he would underline his unstinting faith in both stoppers by handing both stars opportunities in high-stakes matches.

"I cannot kill competition, I cannot close the door for someone to get into the team," he said. "And I cannot give a player, even a goalkeeper, guarantees that he is my first choice forever, if he doesn't perform.

"Obviously you cannot change a goalkeeper if he makes a mistake, but you can change a goalkeeper if he makes five mistakes. And so what is my first choice today cannot be my first choice tomorrow, it depends on performance. But if the goalkeeper gives stability to the team then I don't see a reason to change."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.