Chelsea's Jose Mourinho: 'Juan Mata, Fernando Torres unlikely for season opener'

Chelsea's Juan Mata celebrates scoring the first goal of the Premier League encounter with Everton on May 19, 2013
© PA Photos
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho concedes that Juan Mata, Fernando Torres and Cesar Azpilicueta are likely to miss his first match back at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has admitted that international commitments are likely to rule Juan Mata and Fernando Torres out of his first match back at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues begin their Premier League campaign against Hull City on August 18, but three days before a large majority of his squad will be involved in friendly internationals.

Spain have a trip to Ecuador booked for August 14, with any player involved not due back in London until just 24 hours before the Hull match because of the long flight to Guayaquil.

La Roja boss Vicente del Bosque is expected to call on Mata, Torres and Cesar Azpilicueta for the Ecuador friendly, with Mourinho conceding that the trio will probably not start against Hull as a result.

He told The Guardian: "My lineup will depend a lot on which players go away with their national teams two days before the opening of the Premier League. If one has to go to Ecuador and comes back and arrives in London on Saturday without having slept after a 15-hour flight, coming in to train on Saturday morning, I don't think he is going to play on Sunday.

"If a player plays for England on Wednesday against Scotland, let's say plays for 45 minutes at Wembley and then an hour after the game he is at home in Cobham sleeping, he is in a better condition to play. The team will be decided game after game and week after week.

"What happens before the Hull City game has an impact. Also, if we have to play against Aston Villa two or three days later, we still don't know when that will be. I will have to think about two or three matches at the same time. If the game is postponed until two months later and I have only one match in a week, I will think differently. It depends on the situation."

Chelsea continue their pre-season preparations with a friendly against an Indonesian All Star XI on Thursday.

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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CChelsea38269373324187
2Manchester CityMan City38247783384579
3Arsenal38229771363575
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd382010862372570
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs38197125853564
6Liverpool38188125248462
7Southampton381861454332160
8Swansea CitySwansea38168144649-356
9Stoke CityStoke38159144845354
10Crystal Palace38139164751-448
11Everton381211154850-247
12West Ham UnitedWest Ham381211154447-347
13West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom381111163851-1344
14Leicester CityLeicester38118194655-941
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle38109194063-2339
16Sunderland38717143153-2238
17Aston Villa38108203157-2638
RHull City38811193351-1835
RBurnley38712192853-2533
RQueens Park RangersQPR3886244273-3130