Tottenham v Chelsea preview
Capital rivals to battle it out for a place in the FA Cup final
Last Updated: 13/04/12 12:05pm
Harry Redknapp & Roberto Di Matteo: Setting their sights on silverware
Top-four rivals, capital foes and FA Cup semi-finalists Tottenham and Chelsea will do battle at Wembley Stadium on Sunday evening.
The fact that the game is kicking off when it does, at 6pm, has been a bone of contention for the Blues, with a UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg with Barcelona awaiting them on Wednesday.
They have, however, begrudgingly accepted the hand dealt to them by the Football Association and will be looking to close on another piece of major silverware this weekend.
Chelsea's recent record in the FA Cup suggests they could be the team to beat this season, with the West London outfit having taken the trophy in three of the last five campaigns.
The Blues also tend to fare well against Tottenham, but the fact that the game is being held on neutral territory would appear to level the playing field.
Spurs will be hoping that is the case, as they attempt to end their four-year wait for a trophy and a 21-year wait for FA Cup success.
There has been nothing to choose between the two teams in Premier League action this season, with a 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane followed by a goalless stalemate at Stamford Bridge.
It is Chelsea who will enter the game in better form, though, with the Blues having gone four unbeaten in the league to remain in the hunt for a Champions League spot.
Spurs continue to occupy a standing inside the top four, but they have picked up just one Premier League victory in eight - allowing the chasing pack to close in.
Chelsea could be without two key defenders for one of the biggest games of their season.
Branislav Ivanovic definitely misses out, with the versatile Serb set to start a three-match ban after being found guilty of violent conduct by the Football Association.
Ashley Cole could also be absent for the Blues, with the England international still struggling with an ankle problem.
Roberto Di Matteo has no other injury concerns to contend with, so his biggest decision is likely to be who to play up front - with Fernando Torres battling it out with Didier Drogba, a man with an enviable Wembley record, for a starting berth.
Having seen Tottenham come unstuck in their last outing, a 2-1 defeat to Norwich on Easter Monday, Harry Redknapp is likely to shuffle his pack.
Emmanuel Adebayor and Rafael van der Vaart are expected to be drafted back into the starting XI, while Ryan Nelsen has played a leading role in Spurs' cup quest so far.
Scott Parker will be hoping to be involved after missing the Norwich game with a hamstring complaint, while Niko Kranjcar, William Gallas and Younes Kaboul are also looking to shake off knocks.
Tottenham v Chelsea FA Cup
Petr Cech has admitted Chelsea were lucky to be awarded their second goal during their 5-1 FA Cup semi-final victory over Tottenham at Wembley.
PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor has added his voice to those calling for the introduction of goal-line technology in football.
Scott Parker believes Juan Mata's hugely controversial goal played a 'massive part' in Spurs' FA Cup semi-final defeat to Chelsea.
- FA 'heartened' by technology
- Adebayor - Killing the game
- Fifa confirm goal-line testing
- Di Matteo - We deserved it
- Redknapp fumes at referee
- Terry - Referee was wrong
- Chelsea romp to Spurs win
- Walker working on his game
- Di Matteo has nothing to lose
- Di Matteo plays down feats
- Mata has high hopes
- Harry not thinking of England
- Terry and Cole set to return
- Redknapp targets cup glory
- Torres wants first Wembley win
- Gallas ready for cup return
- Friedel eyes Chelsea misery
- Bolton memories haunt Cahill
- Adebayor - Take the opportunity
- No nerves for Nelsen
- Di Matteo - It's in our hands
- Di Matteo hits out at FA