Jose Mourinho has a wealth of talent at his disposal since returning to Stamford Bridge but who are the best first-team players unlikely to make the starting eleven?

GK: Mark Schwarzer

The Australian international was released by Fulham this summer and the Aussie was asked to join Chelsea as second choice to Petr Cech. 

With so many competitions to play, it's inevitable the veteran goalkeeper will get playing time at Stamford Bridge but as a back-up between the posts, Schwarzer is a competent choice. 

RB: Cesar Azpilicueta 

The Spain international showed great promise last season under Rafael Benitez but has been sidelined since the return of Jose Mourinho who favours the stronger, bigger and goal-scoring Branislav Ivanovic. 

LB: Ryan Bertrand

Bertrand is highly-regarded at the club and is the current successor to Ashley Cole. However the England youngster, who made his European debut in the 2012 Champions League final, looks set to wait until Cole loses his spot, which is unlikely as the England first-choice left-back is rarely injured. 

CB: David Luiz

Luiz' future is in serious doubt now that Mourinho has returned. Many critics think he will be too reckless to fit into a typical Mourinho team and the Brazilian has been the subject of interest for Barcelona for some time now.

Luiz is too good not to play on a regular basis and this suggests he won't be at Chelsea long unless John Terry or Gary Cahill get injured.

CB: Thomas Kalas

The 21-year-old Czech is a new addition to the Chelsea first-team squad after joining in January 2011.

He was loaned back to his old club Sigma Olomouc before joining Chelsea full-time to become a first-team player. 

He is quick, strong and can beat a player with ease but it's likely he will see little first-team opportunities this season. 

CM: Michael Essien

After spending a season on-loan at Real Madrid with his current boss, Essien is obviously the experienced back-up for any injuries sustained in midfield. 

It seems the Ghanaian is behind Ramires and Frank Lampard in the pecking order at Stamford Bridge. 

Essien is 31 this year and still has a lot of life left at the top level. After proving his fitness in La Liga, Essien will be hoping to battle his way into the starting line-up. 

DM: John Mikel Obi

The Nigerian had an impressive pre-season, playing well in the Confederations Cup for his country. 

Mikel, who has always been in the shadow of Essien at Chelsea, had a good season last year and was pivotal in helping the Blues finish third in Chelsea's longest season ever. 

Like Essien, Mikel will have to force his way into the side when either Ramires or Lampard miss-out. Another barrier for the big Nigerian is the summer signing of Marko Van Ginkel who looks to be a favourite of Mourinho.

RM: Juan Mata

The Spanish international is Chelsea's best player to be linked with a move away from the club this transfer window. 

Mata, aged 25, has proved to be one of Chelsea's best players since his arrival in 2011. The little playmaker has played non-stop football for over a season since 2012 and needs a long rest before returning to regular action. 

With a crop of great attacking, wide players, Mourinho will have to find Mata a place because the skilful creator of goals is wanted by some of Europe's top club's. 

LM: Victor Moses

Moses arrived from Wigan last summer and was considered to be a great signing at the time however the footballing maturity he showed for the Latics seems to have faded since moving to West London. 

Moses was on the fringe of the first team last season and with a new batch of attacking talent having recently joined, the Nigerian will need to work extremely hard to earn a starting spot. 

He is still only 22. 

ST: Fernando Torres

What can you say about Torres? He looks like he will never recapture that elusive form that made him a great striker. 

Always working hard but not looking dangerous, Torres is a shadow of his former self. 

Mourinho has signed Samuel Eto'o and brought back the on-loan Romelu Lukaku to strengthen his forward line so Torres looks set struggle for regular football this year. 

ST: Demba Ba

Ba was bought in January last season for a respectable fee of around £7 million competition for Fernando Torres. 

Unfortunately the big striker could not get a regular place in the starting eleven and played less games than Torres in the remainder of the season for the Blues. 

Ba has been linked with a return to Newcastle United after the acquisition of Eto'o and Lukaku has left the Senegalese striker in stiff competition to be the main main at Chelsea.   

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Topics:
#Premier League
#Chelsea
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