Chelsea starlet Eden Hazard has questioned his manager's assertion that rest will benefit him - after the Portuguese boss earlier this week stated that he was in fear of his star player burning out ahead of Belgium's friendly against the Ivory Coast.
The 23-year old has been Chelsea's standout performer this season as they challenge for the title, being instrumental in their 3-1 win over neighbours Fulham last weekend and is Chelsea's top scorer this term with 13 goals. Hazard's team are currently occupying top spot with 63 points and are four points clear of nearest challengers Liverpool.
Mourinho said ahead of the game against the Ivorians that he hoped that his star player would not play any part in the game, stating that the rest would help Chelsea's top scorer this season.
"He needs a rest," said Mourinho. "It'd be perfect if his national coach did not play him.
"He can not have a rest in the club. In the national team he doesn't have to play friendly matches.
"He needs a rest and they could give him a rest. It's important for us and I prefer him on the pitch even if he's tired because I know he can produce things."
However, the Belgian international insists that he is a better player when consistently playing 90 minutes of football, completely contradicting his own manager, and that he needs the time in order to succeed as a world class footballer.
He told the Metro: "I don't need rest, as I've said before, I'm at my best if I can play a lot of matches. But I must be aware that I don't let myself burn out.
"I'm in a good rhythm, I'm getting a lot of game time. I did feel a little down in the first half against Fulham but it went much better in the second half."
Chelsea face Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, with a win taking them seven points clear at the top of the Premier League, as Eden Hazard aims to win his first Premier League winners medal, with Mourinho looking for his third.
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