Dec 14, 2013 at 3pm UK at ​Stamford Bridge
Chelsea
2-1
Crystal Palace
Torres (15'), Ramires (36')
Essien (57'), Ivanovic (62')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Chamakh (29')
Chamakh (43')

Jose Mourinho: 'Ashley Cole to be benched again against Crystal Palace'

Chelsea's Ashley Cole in action during a friendly match against Indonesia All-Stars on July 25, 2013
© Getty Images
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho reveals that left-back Ashley Cole will be demoted back to the bench for Crystal Palace's Premier League visit to Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that Ashley Cole will again be dropped for Premier League duties when Crystal Palace visit Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

The 106-times capped England international started against Steaua Bucuresti in the Champions League on Wednesday, but has been left out in favour of Cesar Azpilicueta for Chelsea's last five domestic matches.

With the Blues facing a run of six fixtures in 17 days until the New Year, Mourinho has stressed that rotation is important in order to keep his players fresh, and therefore Cole is likely to be restored at left-back for their Capital One Cup quarter-final with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on Tuesday.

"I need the team to change again. I need fresh players. I need Ashley to be fresh for Sunderland," Mourinho told reporters. "It's important not to kill players by playing them every minute of every game."

Cole, who has made nine Premier League starts this term, is contracted to Chelsea until the summer, but Mourinho has suggested that the 32-year-old defender will be offered a new deal.

Manager of Stoke City Mark Hughes looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and Stoke City at Goodison Park on November 30, 2013
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