Chelsea defender Cesar Azplicueta has revealed that he was hurt to be dropped from the starting eleven for the Blues’ home tie against Swansea City.
Manager Antonio Conte’s decision to rest the Spanish international saw a personal run of 74 Premier League games without missing a minute of action come to an end for the player.
This was the first time Azpilicueta had been dropped for a Premier League match in nearly two years since being named among the substitutes for Chelsea’s home loss to Bournemouth in December 2015.
“Of course (it hurts)! I want to play every game,” Azpilicueta said after his team’s 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid. “Sometimes you need a rest. For that we have the manager that sees the performances, the training. He tries to make the best decision and from that all of us have to go in the same direction.”
The defender has since been restored to the starting lineup for Chelsea’s games against Newcastle United and Atletico Madrid.
Azpilicueta has been a vital player for Chelsea since signing from French club Marseille in 2012. The 28-year old has been a consistent performer this season while playing a number of different positions across defence. He has scored 1 goal and provided 5 assists so far this season in the league.
Chelsea and Azpilicueta will be in action this weekend in a London derby away to West Ham United.