Chelsea need more depth for title challenge: Benitez

LONDON Thu Jan 3, 2013 6:31pm IST

Frank Lampard (8) of Chelsea is congratulated by teammates Gary Cahill (2nd R), Branislav Ivanonic (R) and Victor Moses (obscured) after scoring his team's fourth goal against Aston Villa during their English Premier League soccer match at Stamford Bridge, London December 23, 2012. REUTERS/Andrew Winning

Frank Lampard (8) of Chelsea is congratulated by teammates Gary Cahill (2nd R), Branislav Ivanonic (R) and Victor Moses (obscured) after scoring his team's fourth goal against Aston Villa during their English Premier League soccer match at Stamford Bridge, London December 23, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Andrew Winning

LONDON (Reuters) - Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez bemoaned a lack of depth in his squad after his club's shock 1-0 defeat by bottom side Queens Park Rangers on Wednesday and said new signings were needed to challenge for the Premier League title.

"(Fernando Torres) is one of the players (who needs a rest). You see two or three players who have been playing too many games in the last weeks or months. So it's difficult," Benitez told reporters.

The blues manager was unable to confirm the arrival of Newcastle frontman Demba Ba, saying the deal was not yet official but that he hoped to have a new striker by the weekend.

"I think the club is working and hopefully we can see someone else... If we can do the business I hope so (a new striker available for the weekend game)," he said.

Chelsea's loss to QPR at Stamford Bridge marked the end of a four-game winning streak and left them languishing in fourth place, 14 points behind leaders Manchester United but with a game in hand.

"We have to do everything almost perfect if we want to reduce the gap (at the top)," Benitez said.

But he admitted a perfect run was a tall order.

"Especially for us. We were playing so many games with the same players and you could see today that maybe these players couldn't go to the level that we were expecting."

Benitez dismissed criticism that he had fielded a weakened side against QPR by resting midfielders Juan Mata and Eden Hazard.

"We cannot carry on with the same players every game and if you play against a team at the bottom of the table at home you have to trust your players," the Spaniard said.

(Editing by Ed Osmond)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Champions League

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Swiss Indoors Basel

Swiss Indoors Basel

Federer opens Basel campaign in style, Nadal progresses.  Full Article 

Close To Collapse

Close To Collapse

Crisis deepens at Caterham Formula One team.  Full Article 

Olympic Recognition

Olympic Recognition

Kosovo granted provisional Olympic recognition by IOC.  Full Article 

WTA Finals

WTA Finals

World number one Williams walloped by Halep   Full Article 

West Indies Trouble

West Indies Trouble

ICC 'concerned' by India-West Indies dispute  Full Article 

Ivanovic Wins

Ivanovic Wins

Ivanovic enjoys freedom of underdog role against Bouchard  Full Article 

Gourlay Quits

Gourlay Quits

Chelsea chief executive quits club   Full Article 

Soccer Racism

Soccer Racism

Putin urged to act against racism in Russian soccer  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage