Carlo Ancelotti has promised that Chelsea's international contingent will be in the best possible condition for next summer's World Cup finals.
The Italian coach is determined to ensure that captain John Terry and fellow Englishmen Frank Lampard and Joe Cole, plus other internationals such as French striker Nicolas Anelka, are in the best of health for the back end of the club season and the big one in South Africa.
Despite their wish to play in every match, Ancelotti's philosophy is to give players like Terry and Lampard an occasional rest to prevent burnout and injuries. Both England stars have been dropped from the starting XI for the Carling Cup tie against Bolton at Stamford Bridge.
"If I have a possibility to give rest to the players, above all those who play in their national teams, it's better,'' Ancelotti said. "At this moment, Terry and Nicolas Anelka are in very good condition, but if we want to maintain that, it's better to give them a rest.
"They do want to play every game, even this season. But, for them, it's better sometimes to rest. It's very important to prevent injuries. When I played, it was work, work, work every day. These days you work hard with intensity, but it's also important to give the players rest to prevent injuries. This is our way.
"We used this in Milan and we're using it now at Chelsea. When I arrived here I found a very good situation here already. Chelsea have been doing that. I think, at the end of May, Terry and Lampard will be in very good condition and will do a fantastic World Cup."