Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho claims to be unconcerned by the form of Andre Schurrle despite having taken the decision to substitute the German forward at half-time in each of his last two appearances.
Schurrle was removed from duty after only 45 minutes against Watford on Sunday afternoon, the second time in a week this had happened following his substitution in the draw with Southampton at St Mary’s.
The World Cup winner was in dreadful form before the interval in the FA Cup encounter with the Hornets, which Chelsea went on to win 3-0, but Mourinho insisted he took Schurrle off for purely tactical reasons.
"No, I'm not worried [about Schurrle's form]," Mourinho told reporters following the third round victory at Stamford Bridge.
"At times I just do things that the players don't like, because it's part of the job. But at half-time, I wanted to win the game.
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“I sought to win the game, I needed to make a couple of changes, and I tried to change some players and the system and the dynamic.
"In this moment, I forget the individual, I forget the players. I just do what I think is the best for the team."
Willian was the player to benefit from Schurrle’s removal against both Saints and Watford, and certainly made hay against the later with his fine shot from 25 yards opening the scoring for Chelsea following a goalless first period.
It was almost typical of Schurrle’s recent luck that his replacement was able to provide a decisive intervention, and the 24-year-old has appeared bereft of confidence in a Chelsea shirt of late.
This will not have been helped by being binned in each of his last two outings, and it remains to be seen when he will once again be included in the Chelsea starting XI. Schurrle has been linked with a return to the Bundesliga with Borrusia Dortmund but, for the time being at least, he will remain with Chelsea.