English roundup-Drogba to start for Chelsea


Fri, 18 Feb 17:19:00 2011

Brief news ahead of this weekend's FA Cup matches.

* Didier Drogba will start for holders Chelsea in their FA Cup fourth round replay at home to Everton on Saturday (1230 GMT) after losing his place to Fernando Torres in the drawn Premier League match against Fulham on Monday.

"Drogba will start, but I have to choose the striker to use with Drogba," coach Carlo Ancelotti told the club's website (www.chelseafc.com) on Friday.

"I saw the same Didier, in focus on the training working hard with good motivation, and I think he will play a fantastic game."

Torres and fellow new signing David Luiz are unavailable -- Torres because he played in the competition for Liverpool and Luiz because he was not registered in time for the first match which ended in a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.

Russian midfielder Yuri Zhirkov is also in the squad after recovering from a calf injury sustained against Sunderland three months ago.

* Everton will again be without striker Louis Saha, who scored in the 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.

The injury-hit Frenchman, who scored four goals against Blackpool in his last game to make it eight in six matches, has yet another hamstring problem.

* Alex Ferguson says Manchester United's fifth-round tie with minor league Crawley Town at Old Trafford is evidence that there is plenty of life left in the FA Cup.

"They talk about the FA Cup dying but it won't die as long as you've got giant-killing acts that Crawley have already produced," said Ferguson as he seeks to extend United's record number of Cup final wins to 12.

"It will be brilliant for the Crawley fans but their team's performances against Derby County, Swindon and Torquay tell you they deserve to be in this round.

"We respect the fact that Crawley are the best non-league side for quite a while," added Ferguson, who needed replays to get past minor league Exeter and Burton Albion in 2005 and 2006.

Ryan Giggs has extended his contract at United for another season taking him into his 21st year at the club.

* Conference side Crawley visited Old Trafford on Thursday night and took the "visitors' tour" -- complete with recordings of great nights at the stadium -- to get some idea of the noise and atmosphere that awaits them on Saturday.

* Arsenal must come down from the high of beating Barcelona at the Emirates to the more mundane surroundings of Brisbane Road as they face Leyton Orient in the fifth round on Sunday.

Theo Walcott, who went off in the second half of the 2-1 Champions League win with a hamstring tweak, is expected to be available, as is Bacary Sagna who was suspended on Wednesday.

Centre back Johan Djourou is out, after hurting his back on Wednesday, along with the suspended Abou Diaby but "forgotten" striker Marouane Chamakh will return to the squad.

"There will be some rotation," said manager Arsene Wenger. "We play Sunday, Wednesday and then Sunday again."

* Bolton Wanderers, who visit Fulham in the fifth round on Sunday, were hit by a second major injury blow in a week as fullback Sam Ricketts was sidelined for the rest of the season after rupturing an Achilles tendon in Wednesday's fourth-round replay win over Wigan Athletic.

Last weekend centre back Zat Knight suffered a knee ligament injury that will rule him out for up to six weeks.

Daniel Sturridge, who has scored three goals in three games for Bolton since arriving on loan from Chelsea, is ineligible.

* League Cup finalists Birmingham City will be without defenders Martin Jiranek (thigh) and Liam Ridgewell (calf) for their fifth round clash with Sheffield Wednesday after they were injured in a midweek league defeat by Newcastle United.

Both are expected to be fit for next weekend's Wembley showdown against Arsenal.

To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)


Not already a Yahoo! user ? to get a free Yahoo! Account