Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has defended his squad after Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson suggested that the Blues might need to be worried because of the age of their players.
The west London outfit currently have nine players over the age of 30, but the Portuguese boss insists that they also boast of a wealth of experience that could be imparted to the rest of the squad.
“These players still have a lot to offer,” Villas-Boas said. “Just look at the trophies they have won and how successful they have been.
“Chelsea are the second or third oldest team in the Premier League and I must respect the recovery periods of the older players.
“So I must find the correct balance between experience and youth and find out what kind of game we can play.”
The Blues won 4-0 in a pre-season friendly against the Thai Premier League All Stars at the weekend, with Frank Lampard, Jose Bosingwa, Florent Malouda and Branislav Ivanovic getting their names on the score sheet.
Young midfielder Josh McEachran also put in a strong performance, and earned the praise of his boss after the game.
“Josh is an amazing British talent for the future who offers us flexibility. It’s all in his brain,” the former Porto boss said.
“He anticipates problems with his speed of thought.
“Against Malaysia last week we spent a lot of time passing the ball sideways.
“Today we played more forward passes which gave us more penetration and more opportunities.
“Everything that didn’t happen in Malaysia happened today. We scored some goals and everything looks more positive.”