Chelsea interim manager Guus Hiddink admits Radamel Falcao needs to seek opportunities to play after his parent club Monaco opted against recalling the striker due to injury.
Monaco vice-president Vadim Vasilyev says the Ligue 1 club explored the possibility of cutting short Falcao's loan at Stamford Bridge, only for a thigh problem to end that prospect.
The Colombia striker joined Chelsea last summer after an unsuccessful loan stint at Manchester United.
But his spell with the Blues has been equally underwhelming, with just one goal and no appearances since October due to a thigh injury. A return date is not known.
"For him it's important to play, to start playing," Hiddink said on Friday.
"If you see his recent path here and also at Man United, not playing, that's difficult for a player.
"He must look for circumstances where he can play. I can understand this remark (from Vasilyev)."
Vasilyev earlier revealed the former Porto and Atletico Madrid striker did return to Monaco last week to be assessed by his parent club.
Vasilyev told RMC Sport: "It's true that we've talked about Falcao on numerous occasions.
"The original idea was that he would return to Monaco to play the second half of the season. He came over and had a medical. Unfortunately, he was injured.
"So we took the decision that it would be better for him to stay with Chelsea. Could he return one day? I won't close the door, that door remains open."