Fernando Torres says the Chelsea players know they must maintain a high level of performance to remain in Jose Mourinho's first-team plans.
The striker was afforded the full 90 minutes for the first time this season in Tuesday's 2-0 win over Swindon Town in the Capital One Cup, and opened the scoring just before the half-hour mark with his second of the campaign.
Torres recognizes the strength in depth at Chelsea, with the likes of Juan Mata and David Luiz not included for the win over Fulham on Saturday, but is hopeful for game time throughout the term.
"We know the season is long," he told club's official website. "We will have the chance to play important games.
"We are in the manager's plans. We have 25 very good players in the squad and it is difficult to play in this great team, but we are fighting for the positions. It is the manager's decision so to keep working hard is the only chance to start all the games."
Chelsea made 10 changes from the weekend, with only Gary Cahill retaining his place in the starting XI, and Torres praised the much-changed squad for its level of performance as the club booked a place in the fourth round.
"It was good minutes for the players who have not been involved in the last matches, so everyone is happy to be involved in the lineup and it is one more step forward," he added. "It was very tough because always in the cup when you play away against teams in the lower divisions they show what football is about - the passion and the intensity when playing against a top team.
"We know this from our experience in previous seasons so we are very happy with the performance of the team."
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