Jose Mourinho has hit back at the congested fixture list that will see his Chelsea side up against Arsenal on Tuesday 29th October two days after playing against Manchester City on Sunday 27th.

The Portuguese manager says that the lack of time between such important games means he is forced to rotate to a less experienced side:

"I have to make a decision, but probably my decision is that the under-21 team will have a very good experience to play in the Capital One Cup

"We play Sunday against Man City and we play Tuesday [in the cup] against Arsenal. When the people that decide the fixtures play us on the Tuesday after a Sunday match and Arsenal play on the Saturday [against Crystal Palace], it's something that I have to accept, because I have no other option, but I have to prioritise.

"The league is more important. After that we go to Newcastle, too, and probably it will be a good chance for the kids to play a good match."

Arsenal also have a tough fixture list around that time, with games against Dortmund, Crystal Palace and Chelsea all in the space of a week.

Arsenal's following fixture on Saturday is against Liverpool, before the Gunners face the daunting away trip to Dortmund. Manchester United at Old Trafford awaits the following Sunday.

Jose Mourinho's assertion that many first-team regulars will not be involved has been taken with a pinch of salt - with many believing that he is trying to convince Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger to play a similarly inexperienced side to their game against West Brom.

Chelsea possess more strength in depth than many of their rivals, particularly in midfield, with the likes of Juan Mata, Willian, Kevin De Bruyne, Frank Lampard and Michael Essien all failing to make the starting 11 in their last Premier League game.

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