Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has admitted he did not want to risk Ledley King's long-term fitness by selecting him for Saturday's goalless draw with Chelsea.
The centre-back's well-documented knee problems often rule him out of playing too many matches in quick succession.
Having played 83 minutes of Wednesday's midweek draw with Stoke, Redknapp elected to rest the former England international and partnered William Gallas with Younes Kaboul.
The former Chelsea and Arsenal man produced an outstanding display on his return to Stamford Bridge to fully justify Redknapp's decision.
And the Spurs boss explained: "I went with Gallas today.
"We played here last year and Gallas was the best player on the pitch. We went to Arsenal last year when we won, he was the best player.
"If I'd have played Ledley today anyway, I could've wiped him out.
"He wanted to play but it might just have damaged his knees so badly, we might not see him again this year.
"William's a good player. You don't do what Gallas has done in the game win what he's won unless you are a top player."