Jose Mourinho insists John Terry still has a huge role to play despite the defender missing out against Arsenal.
Terry was an unused substitute in Chelsea’s 2-0 win over Arsenal on Saturday as Kurt Zouma, 20, started alongside Gary Cahill in the heart of defence.
However, the Blues boss says he decided to select Zouma to cope with the Gunners’ pace and he has stressed that Terry remains his “first” choice in defence.
“John Terry does not need me to speak with him. He knows what I feel,”
Mourinho told reporters.
“He knows the relationship, he knows he’s my man. He knows that if I have to choose one out of 25 to be my man, he is the first. He knows that I care about him. He knows that nothing is at risk. He knows that my decision was only to help my team win the match.
“I thought Arsenal were coming to play a defensive game with a fast striker who gets behind people. We had to bring our defensive line up and to play against Theo Walcott the best player we have is Zouma.”
Chelsea gave their hopes of defending their Premier League title a huge boost with their win over Arsenal as Manchester City suffered a surprise loss at home to West Ham.
The Blues are now eight points adrift of league leaders City, but they are just three points behind Arsenal.
Chelsea are available at 8.00 to win the Premier League outright, with the Gunners at 6.00 while City remain strong favourites at 1.53.