Antonio Conte felt his changes paid off in Chelsea’s 1-1 draw at Liverpool.
The Italian made a number of key decisions, bringing in Danny Drinkwater for Cesc Fabregas – the summer signing’s first Premier League start since his arrival from Leicester.
Chelsea got men behind the ball for much of the first half – but boss Conte insisted it was the right approach.
“I think we played in a really good way – a tactical way and I think it was difficult for Liverpool to make chances,” Conte said at his post-match press conference.
“It was a tactical decision to be in the first half very solid. The game changed in the second half and we dominated the game.
“When you have to play a lot of games every coach tries to make the best decision, otherwise you risk having the players very tired.
“For example, Cesc played every game from the start of the season. Today I took this decision.
“It was an important one because when you give a new player this type of chance against Liverpool it shows the coach trusts the player. I think I can count on Drinkwater.”
Former Chelsea forward Mohamed Salah put Liverpool ahead midway through the second half – the Egyptian’s 15th goal for the Reds this season.
But Chelsea battled on and substitute Willian netted an 85th-minute equaliser.
“The impact of the subs was great,” said Conte.
“We must be pleased. Both teams played with a great intensity from the start to the end. We drew and tried to win the game.”