Guus Hiddink has hinted there may be room for experiment in the side he takes to Aston Villa this weekend, with Diego Costa and Eden Hazard still unavailable.
Chelsea face Villa away tomorrow as the Premier League enters its final chapters.
Sitting in tenth place the Blues will be seeking a strong finish to their campaign after the international break, having drawn 2-2 at home to West Ham in their last match.
However a squad shake-up is in order as the wear and tear of a disappointing season has taken its toll on some of the usual Chelsea starters.
Hiddink said: “‘Whether Pato will be actively involved we will see tomorrow.
“We now have eight games coming up and to be honest there is not much to win for Chelsea any more.
“I don’t give any player a guarantee but there might be some time for experiments.”
Costa is still suspended for his altercation with Gareth Barry in the FA Cup tie with Everton last month.
The striker has also been handed an additional one-match ban and a £20,000 fine after admitting improper conduct over his reaction to receiving a red card for the incident.
Hiddink had no update on Hazard’s injury, but said the Belgian was still working with the team physio and would not be available for Saturday’s game.
Chelsea come up against a side in turmoil after manager Remi Garde parted ways with bottom-placed Villa by mutual consent earlier this week.
His departure comes hot the heels of resignations by chief executive Tom Fox and sporting director Hendrik Almstadt in March.
The Midlands club sit 12 points from safety having won just three of their 31 games this season.
But Hiddink insisted the game on Saturday was by no means a foregone conclusion, he said: “They were playing with a lot of ambition against Swansea, the team looked very fresh.
“We can expect an entertaining game tomorrow.”
Image courtesy of Chelsea TV via YouTube, with thanks