Often Partisan

A Bridge too far? The Chelsea FA Cup 5th Round Preview

Today sees Birmingham City take on the mighty Pensioners of Chelsea for the right to be in the draw for the quarter finals of the FA Cup. It’s a tough draw for Blues but last year proved that sometimes you can’t count on your reputation to win the game.

Chelsea FC

Although it’s been denied in the press, I get the impression André Villas-Boas is a man under pressure. Chelsea haven’t had the greatest sequence of results and they look well out of the title race at the moment. They’ve got a £50million striker who can’t score, a slightly shaky back line and a captain who’s in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.

Ashley Cole, John Terry, Salomon Kalou and Didier Drogba are all apparently out; Ramires will play and AVB has stated he will choose between Fernando Torres and Romelu Lukaku up front. Of course, the young Portuguese gaffer has the thought of the Champions League tie away to Napoli in his mind, and thus I don’t think he’ll risk players he doesn’t have to.

Chelsea’s pedigree in this competition is excellent; having won it six times including three wins in the last five years (06-07, 08-09 and 09-10). Last season they went out in the fourth round on penalties to Everton having tanked Ipswich 7-0 at home in round three.

Blues

Well, all good runs must come to an end and I have a feeling that Blues 13 match unbeaten run in all competitions is going to end today. Despite Blues’ excellent form it has tailed off recently with goals becoming hard to come by and the side looking unbalanced with the sale of Jean Beausejour.

Nikola Zigic, Marlon King, Guirane N’Daw and Enric Valles all miss out through injury; Myhill is rested and the nineteen man squad taken to London includes five players without a league appearance to their name (Jake Jervis, Akwasi Asante, Callum Reilly, Jack Butland and Brice Ntambwe). Adam Rooney will definitely start as the lone man up top and Colin Doyle will be entrusted between the sticks.

Blues are going for their third consecutive quarter-final appearance in this competition, having lost out to Bolton and Portsmouth at that stage in previous years. Like Chelsea, they have yet to concede a goal in this competition although Blues have required a replay to get past Wolves. Like Chelsea, Blues have a game (the rearranged league game with Barnsley) in midweek that may be of higher priority and as such the team may reflect that.

Whilst I can confess that I’m worried Blues are going to take a mauling I think that we should go out to try to do our best; I’ve become a believer this year that it’s best to try to win every game you can and I’d like to see Blues give their all without worrying about Tuesday. Yes, we’re going to have a minimum of four kids on the bench but that’s the way it has to be – if they can gain something from this experience that’s all to the good. If Blues don’t get hammered, play with a bit of pride, and come out of it unscathed injury-wise I’ll be a happy bunny.

The match is live on ESPN, kick off at 12:30pm

Match previews sponsored by EZE Group - Lifestyle Experts

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9 Responses to “A Bridge too far? The Chelsea FA Cup 5th Round Preview”

  • Jaffa says:

    Could’nt agree more.Let’s just go there and enjoy it!

  • Bluehobba says:

    We should have won this competition last year but we never turned up. This will be a good test against a disorganised quality side. Wouldn’t it be good for the back four to keep a clean sheet. Maybe we should try to loan Torres after the game . KRO prediction 0-0 (dreamer)

  • bluenoseneil says:

    Well, I write this at Half Time having seen one of the best 45 minutes from a Blues side this season. GREAT save for Doyley on the Mata penalty and an incredibly disciplined performance, capped off with a great finish by Murphy for the goal.

    To be honest whatever happens next AVB may have a P45 waiting in his pigeonhole before Easter….

    • bluenoseneil says:

      ….we utterly deserved that and were unlucky not to win. Back to St Andrews and MORE revenue – which is good!!!!

      KRO

  • Wingman Blue says:

    After all of the bad news through the summer, manager defected, best players sold or released, club facing financial armegeddon, and that lousy Oxford friendly, who then could have imagined where we are today?
    In CH we trust, the team we applaud…

  • jeff says:

    c h has performed miracles to keep morale so high..the players have put so much effort in this season.whatever happens here on in im very proud of them and chris hughton.i thank them from the bottom of my heart

  • Scudmuffin says:

    Watched on the telly, shame about Carr. That said blues were brilliant. Controlled the game for the most part.

  • Euston 9.18 says:

    Pissing myself laughing listening to the cockneys crying on national radio football phone~ins.
    One chelsea fan is crying “they only drew because BIRMINGHAM CITY time wasted”
    Says it all really “what a prick” !!

    K`R`O.

  • james says:

    Shouldn’t that be BIRMINHAM????!! Class performance, class support. ” And you all talk fanny over there”


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