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Main » 2013 » June » 7 » Mourinho prepared to bench Chelsea stars

Mourinho prepared to bench Chelsea stars

Jose Mourinho has declared he will pay no attention to reputations when picking his Chelsea team.
The Portuguese parted company with Real Madrid in May amid rumours of widespread discontent in the dressing room after a number of the squad's more experienced members were demoted to the bench.

Mourinho's decision to stick with Diego Lopez in goal after club captain Iker Casillas recovered from injury provoked the ire of players and fans, but the former Porto and Inter manager stressed that he is not afraid of upsetting big name players if he feels it is best for the team.

"I am a coach who looks for a meritocracy," he told Spanish television station Punto Pelota.

"Whoever I think is best must play, without looking at status or the past. You play as you train. It is a normal situation, as it was normal for me to leave (Marco) Materazzi, a mythical player at Inter, on the bench.

"Or like (ex-interim manager Rafael) Benitez this year at Chelsea with (John) Terry. The fans can think that Iker is better than Diego. I accept that, but I am the coach. If there are players who change their modus operandi if they play or not, that is a problem for the player."

There have been suggestions that the dressing room at Real Madrid has been left deeply divided by Mourinho's actions last season, however the 50-year-old was quick to refute those rumours.

"The coach who comes in will find themselves in a different situation from the one I faced," he said. "Now they are psychologically on top of our biggest rival. Also the president will make two good signings."
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