AVB insists Abramovich did not pick trio

Manager Andre Villas-Boas laughed off suggestions that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich ordered him to select Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole and Michael Essien against Bolton.

Lampard was among the scorers as all three played in a 3-0 victory for the Blues, which eased the pressure on their under-fire boss.

It came after Abramovich was reported to have been unhappy that the trio were not in the starting line-up for Tuesday’s Champions League defeat against Napoli.

“I got the call this morning to play all three of them,” Villas-Boas joked.

He added: “Of course it is a coincidence. We got back to our normal 4-3-3, with three fresh legs on the pitch. It was pretty straightforward.

“Lamps has always been competing for a place. He had his chance today and played fantastically well. It was normal squad rotation and nothing new.”

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