FA Cup Preview: Middlesbrough - Chelsea
Rafael Benitez takes the west London side to the Riverside Stadium to face the Championship outfit with a last-eight clash at Old Trafford awaiting the winner
By Husmukh Kerai
Bikey, Williams, McManus, Friend
Carayol, Leadbitter, Dyer, Hailliday
Azpilicueta, Ivanovic, Terry, Bertrand
Ramires, Mikel, Marin
Oscar, Torres, Moses
Tony Mowbray will be without defenders Justin Hoyte and Stuart Parnaby, meaning Andre Bikey should start at right back with Stephen McManus alongside Rhys Williams at center back.
Josh McEachran, currently on-loan from Chelsea, is ineligible to play against his parent club.
Up front Lukas Jutkiewicz (ankle) is a doubt for the game, and so Curtis Main is on standby to support Scott McDonald.
Meanwhile, Rafa Benitez should continue with Petr Cech in goal ahead of second-choice keeper Ross Turnbull, despite his tendency to rotate goalkeepers in the cup.
Ryan Bertrand is likely to replace Ashley Cole at left back, though, with John Terry set to partner Branislav Ivanovic at center back and Cesar Azpilicueta to start at right back.
Juan Mata is likely to be rested for the tie to give Oscar a chance while Fernando Torres should also return to Benitez's team.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Middlesbrough has not scored in its past five meetings with Chelsea and the last time the Blues visited the Riverside Stadium, they thumped Boro 5-0 in the Premier League.
- The Teesiders have only lost three of their last 22 FA Cup games at home.
- This will be the fourth meeting between Middlesbrough and Chelsea in the FA Cup. Chelsea has won two (including the 1997 final) and Boro has won one.
- Chelsea has kept a clean sheet in nine of its last 11 matches against Middlesbrough in all competitions.
- The Blues have only lost one of their last 52 FA Cup games against lower ranked sides; losing 1-0 to Barnsley in March 2008.
- The Londoners’ record of 26 unbeaten FA Cup games is the longest ever run without defeat in the competition. (Next best Blackburn Rovers on 23 saw their run ended in 1886).
- Chelsea's Ashley Cole (pictured right) has won the competition a record seven times.
Top 3 Predictions
Middlesbrough 0-3 Chelsea
- 16.74 %
Middlesbrough 1-3 Chelsea
- 12.25 %
Middlesbrough 0-2 Chelsea
- 10.64 %
|FA Cup (FA)||Feb 27, 2013||Middlesbrough 0 - Chelsea 2|
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Jan 28, 2009||Chelsea 2 - Middlesbrough 0|
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Oct 18, 2008||Middlesbrough 0 - Chelsea 5|
|Dec 7, 2013||Birmingham 2 - Middlesbrough 2||ENG2|
|Dec 4, 2013||Derby 2 - Middlesbrough 1||ENG2|
|Nov 30, 2013||Middlesbrough 1 - Bolton 0||ENG2|
|Nov 23, 2013||Leeds 2 - Middlesbrough 1||ENG2|
|Nov 9, 2013||Middlesbrough 2 - Watford 2||ENG2|
|-||Scott Douglas McDonald||Striker|
|17||Emmanuel Jorge Ledesma||Midfielder|
Times In EST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed