Gary Cahill has suggested Chelsea will have to rely on keeping players fit this season if they do not add to their depleted ranks. Antonio Conte’s side, deprived of the injured Eden Hazard and with new signing Tiemoué Bakayoko sidelined after knee surgery, looked short Kyler Fackrell Authentic Jersey of resources during their Community Shield defeat to Arsenal on Sunday and Cahill was not the only person to notice the squads listed in the Wembley programme showed Chelsea could potentially select from 17 fewer players than their opponents. Alexandre Lacazette flickers in Arsenal display deprived of top-class animation Read more Cahill suggested Chelsea will need to avoid further injuries if they are to challenge on all fronts. “I don’t know, the back of the programme was interesting,” he said when asked whether the squad appeared small to him. “But in terms of quality we’ve certainly got that and you just have to hope we don’t have too many injuries. The new players that have just come are going to be vitally important for us and the quicker they settle the better but there’s no doubt we have added quality to the team.” Antonio Rüdiger has joined Bakayoko and álvaro Morata at Chelsea but the latter pair are arguably replacements for Nemanja Matic and Diego Costa. Cahill reiterated Chelsea’s present numbers would be stretched by Premier League and Champions League campaigns. “They’re going to be tested, 100%,” he said. “We’ll see how that plays out, but we just have to keep everybody fit and keep everybody sharp. Rest is going to be important because we’re going to have a lot of games, and we players are in control of the way we prepare ourselves. The other stuff outside of that is none of our business.” Chelsea have won only once in pre-season – against Arsenal in another friendly – and Cahill said the second-half sending off for Pedro Rodríguez at Wembley, which was swiftly followed by Sead Kolasinac’s equaliser, had been both harmful and unwarranted. “It would be nice to finish a game with 11 men here,” he said. “The the last two games we’ve finished with 10 men [Victor Moses was sent off in the FA Cup final] and it’s obviously difficult. I’ve been told it was an orange card [for Pedro], and it seems to be that when we play at Wembley things go the other way if it’s a 50-50 decision. Up until that point, when we lost the goal and the man, I felt in control of the game.” Cahill was the only Chelsea player to score in the shootout and admitted he does not agree with the new “ABBA” format, saying it makes life tougher for a team who fall behind early on. “First impression, I’m not a fan,” he said. We were a couple of goals down [2-1 behind], after one penalty so mentally that’s different from when you’ve got one, one, one, one. I went, and then obviously we were 2-1 or 3-1 down and mentally it’s differentFans wouldn’t like it either. A best XI is a crutch for the 99.94% of cricket tragics who might legitimately be described as anally retentive. And it would do devastating damage to one of our staple pub chats. “Go on then, give me your XI for each of the next 10 Tests,” doesn’t work quite so well as a conversation stimulant. Advertisement Cricket has always been strikingly innovative in some areas and weirdly resistant to change in others. The number of cautious declarations show that most would rather draw three games than win two and lose one where the defeat invited extra criticism. The same is true of rotation: if England omit, say, Stokes and Root and lose a Test to the West Indies, it would erroneously be viewed as a mistake that should never be repeated. It’s a pretty immature attitude. Ferguson was a master of calculated risk when it came to rotation. He would provisionally plan 10 games ahead. Occasionally his tinkering led to embarrassing defeat but there were far more victories – and, crucially, his players were usually at their peak when it really mattered. At different points of the Treble season of 1998-99, he ordered Peter Schmeichel and Gary Neville to go on holiday because they looked either mentally or physically fatigued. In the same season he left out four regulars for one of the defining games of his career, the FA Cup semi-final replay against Arsenal. There are other reasons for changing a team from game to game. In the World Cup, Heather Knight made it clear England had picked the off-spinner Laura Marsh instead of the slow left-armer Alex Hartley because Sri Lanka had so many left-handers. Marsh took four wickets. It’s good enough for the World Cup winners, yet some saw the men’s team as weak for picking a right-hander at No3 to combat Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel. To completely ignore the strengths of the opposition is the height of misplaced machismo, like slicing off a finger on a first date to show how manly you are. Again, with apologies to those who hate football and/or Manchester United, we can learn from Ferguson. When United played Milan in the 2009-10 Champions League, he gave the diligent Park Ji-sung, usually a winger, the Kyle Emanuel Womens Jersey job of neutralising Milan’s playmaker Andrea Pirlo. It was a masterstroke. Pirlo’s influence was negligible, and United won 7-2 on aggregate