Chelsea boss Villas-Boas jokes: Abramovich told me to play veteran trio!

Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas denies Roman Abramovich picked the team for victory over Bolton Wanderers.
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Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas denies Roman Abramovich picked the team for victory over Bolton Wanderers.

Villas-Boas laughed off any suggestion Abramovich had ordered him to play Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole and Michael Essien.

Villas-Boas recalled the trio who were controversially left out for Tuesday night's Champions League defeat at Napoli and watched them help ease the pressure on him by ending the Blues' five-match winless run.

"What are you trying to say?" he said. "Of course, it's a co-incidence."

He added sarcastically: "I got the call just this morning to play them, all three of them."

That brought laughter at a post-match press conference which was by far the most relaxed of the past month.

But Villas-Boas also warned he would be far less jovial in future should anyone question his integrity, saying: "The day that I feel disrespected in some way about my professionalism, you will find a different person speaking to you."

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