Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Ancelotti to fly from father´s bedside for Blackburn tie

SoccerNews in English Premier League 23 Oct 2009

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Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti hopes to be back at Stamford Bridge in time for the match against Blackburn on Saturday despite returning to Italy to be with his sick father.

Ancelotti learned that his father Giuseppe, 86, was seriously ill after Chelsea’s 4-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday and immediately flew home to be with him.

His father was in a stable condition on Thursday and Chelsea’s assistant boss Ray Wilkins is confident that Ancelotti will be back in time for the Blackburn game.

“I am sincerely hoping that Carlo will be back,” Wilkins said on Friday. “His father is not in the best of condition.

“I spoke to Carlo last night (Thursday) and his father was stable, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that he will be back. Carlo will decide who plays.”

Wilkins will take charge against Rovers if Ancelotti remains in Italy as the Blues look to continue the momentum from their impressive victory over Atletico.

The Blues assistant boss knows Chelsea need to collect as many points as possible now before several of their key players head off for the African Nations Cup in January.

Chelsea are currently banned from signing any new players for the next two transfer windows after being found guilty of inducing teenager Gael Kakuta to breach his contract with Lens two years ago.

But they are trying to get FIFA’s transfer ban suspended via the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

That would allow Chelsea to strengthen their squad to cover for Didier Drogba, Salomon Kalou, Michael Essien and John Mikel Obi when they are on African Nations duty.

Wilkins said: “We have got a massive game against Blackburn and as far as the transfer situation is concerned I am not overly concerned about that.

“It would be very pleasant to be able to bring people in because we lose some influential players in Kalou, Drogba, Essien and Mikel, but we have a squad here that is more than capable of coping with that situation.

“If we are able to bring people in then all well and good and if we are not, we’ll just crack on with what we have got. We are quite confident with what we have here.”

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