No special treatment for Mourinho

Ancelotti says gloves will be off after Chelsea players welcome Mourinho back to London.

    Ancelotti fields questions about his distant predecessor ahead of Tuesday's match [AFP]

    Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti says former coach Jose Mourinho will deserve a warm reception on his return to Stamford Bridge – but that the self-styled Special One will have no impact on the Blues once the match starts.

    Mourinho's Inter Milan visit London on Tuesday holding a 2-1 advantage from their European Champions League last 16 first leg.

    The Portuguese is Chelsea's most successful coach, having won two English Premier League titles and three cups.

    The team he built between 2004 and 2007 is largely the side Inter will face at the Bridge as they bid to stop the Blues winning a trophy that even Mourinho could not take them to.

    Avram Grant, Luiz Felipe Scolari and Guus Hiddink have all taken charge of Chelsea since then.

    Ancelotti, who faced Mourinho last season as a fierce city rival at AC Milan, is avoiding the histrionic gestures his opposite number revels in.

    'Not distracted'

    "The players are not distracted by all this," Ancelotti said on Monday.

    ECL fixtures

    Tuesday March 16

     Chelsea v Inter Milan (1-2)
     Sevilla v CSKA Moscow (1-1)

    Wednesday March 17

     Barcelona v Stuttgart (1-1)
     Bordeaux v Olympiakos (1-0)

    Aggregate score in brackets

    "Mourinho will come back. For him it will be a special evening. 

    "I think the fans will give him a very good reception. He deserves this but the match will be a different thing.

    "All Chelsea players and Inter players are focused on the game. They are not interested in other things.
    "The difference will be made by the different players, the different confidence or courage the players put on the pitch."

    Ancelotti dismissed suggestions the recent mediocre form of the Serie A leaders would have an impact on the game.

    Inter lost 3-1 to Catania on Friday, but Chelsea themselves suffered a 4-2 reverse at home to Manchester City a few days before.

    "I'm not considering an Inter who have dropped in form, I'm thinking about an Inter who have played so well over the season," said the Italian, whose side recovered with a 4-1 win over West Ham at the weekend.

    "We have to be prepared for a team that is playing at its best."

    Chelsea winger Florent Malouda is in dazzling form, providing a goal and two assists in Saturday's win.

    No rush

    "We must have patience so we won't go in a rush and try to score early," said the France international.

    "We will have to be clever and score hopefully more than one goal."

    Mourinho announced that he was the 'Special one' when he arrived at Chelsea in 2004 [AFP]

    Malouda, brought to Chelsea by Mourinho, deftly sidestepped questions about the difference between the coaching methods of the Portuguese and the Italian.

    "There are too many differences to innumerate. I just hope Carlo will make me win my first Champions League," said the winger.

    "We are not thinking about history. It's what happens tomorrow, the past – we don't care. We are just looking to win and go through tomorrow."

    Chelsea will again rely on third-string goalkeeper Ross Turnbull, who played against West Ham because of injuries to Petr Cech and his deputy Henrique Hilario.

    Ancelotti said Portugal defender Ricardo Carvalho was fit again after missing Saturday's game.

    Sevilla host CSKA Moscow on Tuesday with the advantage of an away goal after their 1-1 draw in Russia two weeks ago.

    On Wednesday, Barcelona welcome Stuttgart with the scores from the first leg also 1-1, while Bordeaux go into their home match with Olympiakos 1-0 up.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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