Scolari unfazed by injuries
Luiz Felipe Scolari remains unfazed by Chelsea's lengthening injury list after Michael Ballack was ruled out.
Last Updated: 17/10/08 4:33pm
Luiz Felipe Scolari remains unfazed by Chelsea's lengthening injury list as he confirmed that Michael Ballack is the latest sidelined star at Stamford Bridge.
The German midfield ace played for his country against Wales in midweek - but that has come at a cost after Scolari revealed that Ballack's calf problem will keep him out for three weeks.
And whilst the Brazilian has been boosted by the news that John Terry will make Saturday's match at Middlesbrough - Joe Cole, Ashley Cole and Petr Cech will all miss the trip to Teesside.
"Nineteen players I have to train. Nineteen are with me. And all of those are in good condition. John Terry has recovered to play," confirmed Scolari.
"Joe Cole will not go with us. Some other players won't go with us because they are injured.
"But I have a team, I have players who will play against Middlesbrough and it's not a problem for me if we have one, two, three or four injuries."
Happy to be tested
Despite the host of players who returned with injuries from international action this week - Scolari insisted he has no qualms about letting his players go.
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is one of a number of bosses who have reacted badly to losing players to injury whilst on international duty - but 'Big Phil' is not following that line.
"Ballack is out for maybe two or three weeks, but I'm not angry. I'm happy because it's a test for me that I'm a good coach," he said.
"I need to change it, to improve, I need to put other players in, I need to motivate other players.
"It's good for my job, it's good for my work. It's not difficult for me.
"For me it's normal, I need to build every week, one different team.
"Many clubs have injuries from the national games because they are strong games. In football it's normal.
"I worked yesterday, Thursday, with only 11 players. Today I worked with 17. It's better! Maybe Saturday I have 19.
"Against Roma in the Champions League next week, maybe I will have 20 or 21.
"This is the life for the coach, you need to understand we have different games and I need to understand that national teams want and need the players.
"I'm a coach, I need to build my team with the players that I have.
"The coaches for national teams don't want injuries for his players, he wants what we want - to win.
"It's not only one club that loses when national teams play. All the clubs. One time my club loses players, one time Liverpool, one time Man United.
"We need to accept this. If you don't accept this it's impossible.
"If you are injured at Chelsea you don't play, if you are injured in the national team you don't play.
"I don't see any time in my life when one coach put a player on the pitch if he is injured."