Veteran midfielder Claude Makelele claims he has an agreement with manager Avram Grant to only play in important Chelsea games.
The 34-year-old has featured only four times in the Premier League so far this season.
However, he has played in all of the Blues' Champions League group stage matches and also represented France on two occasions.
Makelele recently extended his contract until 2009 and claims he has an agreement with Grant to maintain his freshness by limiting the amount of appearances he makes.
He told L'Equipe: "I have an agreement with my club coach. He knows how I manage my games and we have a well-stocked squad.
"He needs me in our very important matches, but he rotates the squad for the easier fixtures.
"That suits me fine. I can have a rest and it is perfect for me."
Makelele joined the Blues from Real Madrid in 2003 and has made almost 200 appearances for the Stamford Bridge club.