The Blues' manager admits the Spanish striker has played too many games this season especially over the festive period and feels he will need time recuperate
The Spanish striker has played 33 times this season in all competitions including all of the Blues’ festive fixtures which his manager believes may have been too much for him.
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He told reporters: "Fernando is one of the players who needs to rest. Two or three players have been playing too many games in the last weeks and months.
"Managing that was going well but against QPR it didn't work. Some of the players couldn't get to the level we were expecting.
"Without talking about names, if you have another striker you can play with two strikers if you need to.
"Or if you want to rest a striker then you can do that and at the moment we are a bit short."
Benitez has conceded it will be difficult for his side to close the gap on Manchester United at the top of the Premier League table with 14 points now separating the two sides.
"I haven't been worried about the league table, I've just talked about one game at a time and now it's the same situation," the Spaniard added.
"If you can't win your games it will be more difficult but the priority is to think about the next game and give the players the confidence that we had before.
"We will analyse what went wrong and try to carry on with the things that we were doing really well.
"We have to do everything almost perfectly now if we want to reduce the gap. When you lose a game it's more difficult, but I can't be thinking about how many points we need."