Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has said that his squad players pushing for a first-team place are now his new ‘untouchables’.
During the Portuguese coach’s first stint at the club, the Blues’ success was heavily built on a solid spine which included the likes of Petr Cech, John Terry, Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba.
The talismanic quartet were dependable, resilient, influential and among the world’s best in each of their respective positions – thus prompting Mourinho to label them his ‘untouchables’.
Nowadays, with the Blues embarking on a 19-game unbeaten run in all competitions and currently sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League, questions have been asked on the club’s new indispensable stars.
Mourinho, however, told reporters ahead of the weekend clash with Sunderland that his side’s crucial players are not those currently in the XI, but those who are competing for a place in the first-team.
“My untouchables now are the ones that are not playing,” he told the club’s official website. “They are responsible for a lot that we are doing.”
“I don’t have one single player at the moment from the ones that aren’t playing a lot that is not training very hard, that is not behaving very well, that is not part of the group.”
“Life is easy when you are always playing, when you are winning and feeling high in your self-esteem. All these guys in my squad are for me absolutely fantastic and I’m so happy with them.”
The West Londoners travel to Sunderland bidding to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League table to nine points over second-placed Southampton who play on Sunday.
The Blues go in to the game coming off an astounding 5-0 away victory over Schalke in the Champions League and many observers expect them to pick up the three points at the Stadium of Light.