Following Chelsea's 0-0 draw with Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal at the Vicente Calderon Stadium, a match in which the Blues suffered several casualties both in terms of injuries and suspensions, manager Jose Mourinho mentioned in his post-match offering that he would request owner Roman Abramovich's permission to select a weakened starting XI against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, April 27.
He is quoted to have said: "The fact that the match is on Sunday, I think puts the problem not in my hands but in the hands of those who decide the game should be on Sunday and not Saturday or Friday.
"We represent English football and are the only team in European competitions. Spain has four and gave them all the conditions to try to have success, so I know what I would do. But I’m not the club. I have to speak to them. I would play with the players who are not going to play Wednesday."
On Wednesday, in an unrelated hearing, Mourinho was hit with an official charge from the Football Association.
A statement on the official FA website read: "Jose Mourinho has been charged with misconduct in respect of post-match comments he made following the fixture [against Sunderland, April 19].
"It is alleged that Mourinho’s comments constitute improper conduct, in that they call into question the integrity of the referee appointed to the above fixture and/or the integrity of Mike Riley, and/or the comments bring the game into disrepute.
"Mourinho has until 6pm on Monday, April 28 to respond to the charge."
While Mourinho's comments about fielding a weakened selection would no doubt anger Manchester City, who also are in contention for the Premier League crown, the FA charge may well encourage Jose to do so, as Richard Keys said on Twitter a matter of hours after the FA statement.
If anything will encourage Mourinho to play a second string X1 at Lpool it's that FA charge today.— Richard Keys (@richardajkeys) April 23, 2014