Wilkins told talkSPORT: "I think Rafa Benitez took a little bit of a liberty at the weekend with the side he selected. These guys can play two games in three days, no problem at all. Champions League football for a club like Chelsea is paramount.
"He (Cole) never played on Saturday at Southampton on Saturday, he plays 15 minutes against United and Danny Welbeck takes him on a run and he pulls his hamstring.
“I honestly feel he has to play all the time, Ashley. He is one of these machines. You have to keep it well oiled and it will fly. Had he played on Saturday, he wouldn't have done that yesterday.”