STRONG SIDE FOR CARDIFF CUP CLASH

Posted on: Fri 12 Feb 2010

As is becoming almost customary for Carlo Ancelotti prior to a game, he has named his side for Saturday's FA Cup tie with Cardiff City.

The manager will be without John Terry for the fifth round tie at Stamford Bridge, with the defender given time to rest, and Ashley Cole who has a fractured ankle, but still named a strong team to take on the Championship promotion hopefuls.

'Tomorrow we play Hilario in goal, defenders are Ferreira, Alex, Carvalho and Zhirkov. Midfielders Lampard, Mikel, Ballack, and strikers Sturridge, Joe Cole and Drogba.

'You want the bench? Turnbull, Bruma, Ivanovic, Malouda, Matic, Borini and Kalou.'

That means a recall for Joe Cole after a knee niggle kept him from travelling to Everton in midweek, and a return for Alex after trouble with tight muscles in his leg and back. Petr Cech is rested completely, while Branislav Ivanovic makes way for Paulo Ferreira at right-back.

Speaking on his captain, Ancelotti said: 'Tomorrow John Terry is recovering and he will not play, he will be ready for the next game against Wolves.'

The Italian also expects the 29-year-old to return from his break in Dubai stronger. 'I think so; he needed to have some days recovering [and he will return to England] in plenty of time to be back for Wolves. I spoke with him after the game against Everton to say to rest for a few days.'

The midday fixture sees a change of focus from league to cup action, and Ancelotti is enjoying competing in the world's oldest club competition.

'It is a very important competition that they won last year, and we have a great opportunity to go forward,' he said. 'We know very well Cardiff will come to do their best, they have a good team, a lot of passion around them, so we have to pay attention and come back to win after the defeat against Everton.

'[It is] totally different because in Italy the Italian Cup is not interesting. It is not interesting for anybody, the players, the fans, the stadiums are empty, it is different.'

In our second-tier visitors, Ancelotti recognises a dangerous threat to our safe passage into the last eight.

'The FA Cup is a fantastic opportunity for all the teams to play their best, they are followed by a lot of passion around them and have fantastic strikers who scored a lot of goals in the Championship - we have to pay attention,' warned the 50-year-old.

It was the first time he had spoken publicly since defeat at Everton, having passed post-match duties at Goodison Park on to his assistant Ray Wilkins. Ancelotti was happy to clear up why.

'I was tired, sometimes Ray can do the press interview because he has better English than me, but not always!' he joked.

Saturday's match will be streamed for free on FAtv at www.TheFA.com/FAtv and is only available to internet users in the UK and Ireland.

For Welsh speaking fans, the game will also be carried live and with a Welsh commentary by television channel S4C.

Former Wales international Malcolm Allen is one of S4C's commentators and English subtitles will be available. The broadcast begins at 11.30am.

The match will be streamed simultaneously online at www.s4c.co.uk.