As he revealed plans to rotate his squad for tonight's Carling Cup fourth round tie against Bolton, the Chelsea manager told Terry and Lampard their days of playing in 60 games a season are firmly behind them. It will be music to the ears of Fabio Capello.
Two Lions: Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti insists that Frank Lampard and John Terry of England will be fresh and fit for the World Cup finals
'They want to play every game, but it's sometimes better to rest,' said Ancelotti. 'At the end of May, John Terry and Frank Lampard will be in very good condition. They will have a fantastic World Cup.'
Lampard, in particular, is a player who barely misses a game and craves the rhythm of regular football, especially when the goals are flowing. He has just scored three in two games to end a 10-match barren spell but Ancelotti warned: 'He is not so young (31) and you have to maintain good control. He realises it is important to give his body recovery time.
'If I have a possibility to give rest to the players, above all those in their national teams, it is better.'
Terry, Petr Cech, Ricardo Carvalho and Nicolas Anelka will all take the night off as Chelsea seek a place in the Carling Cup quarter-finals. Lampard, Michael Essien and Didier Drogba will be on the bench along with youngsters Nemanja Matic, Jeffrey Bruma and Fabio Borini. Ashley Cole, Jose Bosingwa, Yuri Zhirkov and John Mikel Obi are injured.
Henrique Hilario starts in goal with Ancelotti handing a full debut to 19-year-old striker Daniel Sturridge. Lampard has already played 20 games for club and country this season, starting with the Community Shield on August 9. There is scope for him to play another 60 if Chelsea make three finals and England go all the way to the World Cup final.
Little wonder Ancelotti is on guard against burn-out. Having spent his entire career in Italy, where the league shuts down for two weeks over Christmas and the New Year, he is about to negotiate his first path through England's congested winter schedule.
'In England, the matches are very strong with a lot of intensity, different to Italy,' said Ancelotti. 'In Italy, the intensity of the match is a bit down because the matches are more tactical.
'The Italian Cup is not interesting for the fans and the stadiums have only 2,000 people in. It's different here. We have two cups and the stadium will be full.'
Bruno Demichelis, Chelsea's assistant first team coach, is credited with establishing the Milan Lab sports science facility, where he made prevention of injuries central to everything.
His work helped Paolo Maldini and Alessandro Costacurta play into their forties and enabled Milan managers to operate with a squad of just 24.
'That's the difference between now and 20 years ago,' said Ancelotti. 'When I played, it was work, work, work every day. These days you work hard but it's also important to give the players rest to prevent injuries. We used this in Milan and now at Chelsea.'
Ancelotti stressed he will still send out a 'competitive team' against Bolton. 'It is the first title of the season and we want to be in that final,' said the Chelsea boss.
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