With Premier League fixtures now coming thick and fast in the always congested month of December, the need to rotate players becomes essential for Chelsea.
Although stable and consistent team selection usually forms the bedrock for success, the physical demands of English football and the truncated rest periods between matches mean that it is not just serial lineup tweakers such Claudio Ranieri and Rafael Benitez that see the virtues of tinkering with the team.
Although having had his hand forced...
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho believes an independent panel retrospectively punishing divers would be a "disaster."
The west Londoners have found themselves at the heart of the simulation debate this week after several high-profile incidents during last weekend's 2-0 win against Hull.
Diego Costa and Willian both received yellow cards for dives at Stamford Bridge, where City boss Steve Bruce claimed Gary Cahill went down "like something out of Swan Lake" in the penalty box.
Those incidents, along...
For the first time this season, Chelsea find themselves experiencing the unfamiliar feeling of pressure.
The eight points that only a few weeks ago separated the Blues from their main rivals for the Premier League title, Manchester City, have now evaporated (though Chelsea have a game in hand). The expected win for the Citizens over Crystal Palace has seen them draw level with Chelsea at the top of the table as they start to look something more like the team crowned champion last May.
A frustrated Louis van Gaal said Manchester United cannot challenge for the Premier League title after he watched his side "drop two points" in a 1-1 draw away to Aston Villa on Saturday.
United entered the day hot on the heels of second-place Manchester City after a six-game winning streak brought them within four points of their local rivals, but City defeated Crystal Palace 3-0 in the day's early game to open a seven-point gap.
With leaders Chelsea also seven points ahead with a game...