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Mourinho explains Cech absence against Liverpool

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Paul Gilham/Getty Images

Jose Mourinho made five changes from the Premier League-clinching victory last weekend to yesterday's draw with Liverpool.  We probably were expecting at least one more, but while we were concentrating on the full debut of 19-year-old Ruben Loftus-Cheek, the absence of Petr Čech in goal or even on the bench was largely overlooked.  Thibaut Courtois started as usual and on the bench, there sat 19-year-old Mitchell Beeney, who's had a pretty good season in the Chelsea Academy.

But where was Čech?  Surely he, of all other second-choice players deserved a few games here at the tail end of the season, now that everything's been decided?  Especially if he is about to call it quits at Chelsea after 11 seasons...

"Cech's [injury] is a small injury but we don't want players to end the season with problems. Against West Brom if he is fine he plays, but he plays because he deserves it, not because it's goodbye. I still believe next season he will be with us. He was supposed to play today, he knew that."

-Jose Mourinho; source: Chelsea FC

Mourinho didn't elaborate on the nature of the ailment, but Pat Nevin on BBC radio called it a neck injury.

Unfortunate timing for Čech then, though I'd guess he'll start the last two games, provided he's deemed fit enough even for Mourinho's mind games.