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CHELSEA vs Cardiff: FA Cup Preview

FA Cup fifth round

Venue: Stamford Bridge

Date: Saturday, 13 February

Kick-off: 1200 GMT


Our early kick off today sees us play host to Cardiff in the fifth round of the FA Cup and after our 13 game unbeaten run came to an end against Everton mid-week, nothing less than a win is going to appease the majority of us.



Following our recent defeat, Carlo Ancelotti took the step of naming our entire team – including subs – ahead of today’s game and yet again has made sweeping changes. Whilst I hope it doesn’t bite him on the arse, Ancelotti says “It’s a very important competition. We won it last year – I was not here – and we have a great opportunity to go forward in this competition.  We know Cardiff will come to do their best. They have a good team and a lot of passion around them. We have to pay attention. We want to come back to win after the defeat against Everton.  I said that the FA Cup is a fantastic opportunity for all the teams to play their best.  They are followed with a lot of passion around them, and they have good quality.  They have two fantastic strikers and score a lot of goals in the Championship. We have to pay attention.”

Cardiff manager Dave Jones meanwhile, says “You’ve got to believe you can get something, otherwise why are we turning up?  It’s going to be a daunting task, it’s going to be very difficult, we can’t even fill the bench.  It’s no good going there in a defeatist mood, it’s a daunting task of course it is. Even if I had my full squad out then it’d still be a daunting task for us, but whoever plays has to go out there and do their stuff to the best of their ability.  They’re full of internationals; the team is littered with world class players. So that’s something my players should be looking forward to.  We’ve got to go there with a lot of pride and determination in winning. We have to be confident, we have to be brave and we have to work our socks off because they will make us work and if we’re not prepared to go run and chase and see whether something can happen then you’ll never know.  Miracles do come true sometimes.”



For us, Michael Essien (knee), Jose Bosingwa (knee), Juliano Belletti (knee), Deco (knee) and Ashley Cole (ankle) all miss out through injury, whilst John Terry, Nicolas Anelka and Petr Cech all get the day off.

Cardiff are a bit threadbare, with McPhail (ribs), Hudson (ankle), Ledley (knee), Comminges (thigh) and Magennis (leg) all injured.  Bothroyd (ankle), Rae (hamstring) and Blake (back) are a doubt and Capaldi is cup-tied, so Chopra and Gyepes will be asked to play through illness.



CHELSEA: Hilario, Ferreira, Alex, Carvalho, Zhirkov, Lampard, Mikel, Ballack, Sturridge, J Cole, Drogba.

Subs: Turnbull, Bruma, Ivanovic, Malouda, Matic, Borini, Kalou. 

CARDIFF (from): Marshall, Gerrard, Gyepes, McNaughton, Kennedy, Whittingham, Taiwo, Burke. McCormack, Bothroyd (?), Chopra, Enckleman, Wilding, Meades, Matthews, Gerrard, Blake (?), Rae (?)



I’m not sure I even want to think about what the result could be. Yes, we’ve been unbeaten at home so far this season, winning our last six at Stamford Bridge but a promotion-chasing Cardiff haven’t exactly been slouches lately either – not to mention their 100% record over us in the FA Cup!



Andre Marriner




Blue is the colour is an honest insight to the World of Chelsea FC. Not always pretty, sometimes rather cynical, but always realistic.


February 2010
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