Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea  1 - 5

Article

Kranjcar out for season

1 May 2012 19:24

Tottenham midfielder Niko Kranjcar will not feature again this season due to a knee injury, according to Harry Redknapp.

The Croatian, 27, picked up a knee injury in training before last weekend's 5-1 defeat at the hands of Chelsea in their FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.

The Spurs coaching staff had hoped the former Portsmouth playmaker could feature again before the end of the campaign but his boss has now ruled that out.

"Niko is out for the rest of the season," Redknapp told reporters on Friday afternoon ahead of Spurs' match at QPR this weekend.

Tottenham sit fourth in the Premier League table, ahead of Newcastle United on goal difference and just two points ahead of chasing Chelsea, meaning Champions League football is far from guaranteed next season.

Kranjcar has not been a regular starter at White Hart Lane but has made 18 appearances - mostly from the bench - in the club's 2011-12 campaign.

It is still not known whether his injury also rules him out of the Euro 2012 finals, where Croatia are drawn in a group with Spain, Italy and the Republic of Ireland.

Article

Di Matteo plays down Mata ´goal´

16 April 2012 02:46

Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo played down Juan Mata's controversial goal in the club's FA Cup semi-final win against Tottenham on Sunday.

Although Chelsea thumped Spurs 5-1, the game was in the balance when controversy struck.

The winners – who led 1-0 through Didier Drogba's opener – moved further ahead thanks to a goal given to Mata on 49 minutes despite replays showing that the ball clearly did not cross the goal line.

"Apparently it hasn't (crossed the line) so in this case we were on the lucky side," Di Matteo said.

"But how many times before have we had decisions go against us? We scored not just two goals, we scored five, so I'm not sure how much it would matter.

"I talked before the game in my last press conference about the consistency of using the video technology and I'm still of the same opinion."

Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard, who scored later in the match, echoed his manager's opinion and went so far as to say Mata's goal should not have counted.

"It wasn't a goal- simple as that," Lampard said.

"For that you have to feel sorry for Tottenham. Goal-line technology needs to be brought in in my opinion. It's just too important and I've said it before a few times.

"I think we still won the game convincingly though, but in terms of goal-line technology for me it's a no-brainer."

"It's very simple, a lot of other sports have embraced it and although we are all traditionalists and we all want to keep the game as quick moving as possible, but cricket was like that as well and it has benefitted from technology and it has become more exciting to watch.

"Football is a big business and it's too important not to get right."

Although Gareth Bale pulled a goal back for Tottenham, Ramires, Lampard and Florent Malouda all scored in the final 15 minutes to cap off an impressive Chelsea performance.

And Di Matteo preferred to focus on that, adding that the result would give them a real lift ahead of the first leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final against Barcelona at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

"I think our team played very well today," he said.

"I thought it was a great performance by our team. We're pleased to have scored those goals. It's a boost of confidence for us."

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp dubbed referee Martin Atkinson's decision to give the goal as a 'big mistake' in the aftermath of their heavy defeat.

Quizzed on whether he felt Atkinson had guessed the decision, Redknapp responded: "He must have (guessed). I don't think you can be sure, he's just made a mistake.

"The second goal was a disaster. It was nowhere near a goal. He's made a big mistake, he hasn't done it on purpose."

"I don't see how he can give the goal. It's nowhere near over the line. There were bodies lying on the line. There's no way the ball can go anywhere near over the line.

"There's nothing we can do about it now. You need goal-line technology surely, we can't keep going like we're going at the moment with important decisions not being correct."

Redknapp also revealed that Atkinson had apologised to him after the match for the decision.

"I spoke to him and he said he feels worse than I do. I said 'I don't think so!'" he said.

"He said he knows he's made a mistake and he's going to have a bad week as well. It was (a) key moment but we were still bang in the game at 2-1.

"We were chasing the game and we ended up (with) four forwards on the pitch. I brought another forward on and we looked to open. We got punished and they picked us off."

Article

FA Cup: Chelsea 5 Tottenham 1

15 April 2012 21:53

Chelsea benefited from a controversial goal from Juan Mata as they advanced to the FA Cup final with a 5-1 win over Tottenham on Sunday.

Rafael van der Vaart had efforts cleared off the line and against the post in the first half - but Didier Drogba's sensational turn-and-shot ensured a half-time Blues lead.

Referee Martin Atkinson incited shock after the restart when he judged that Mata's effort had bypassed a crowd on the line and gone in, though Spurs' anger lifted a little when Bale slotted home shortly after.

But a late treble for the Blues was to come though - Ramires' finish after beating the offside trap and a fantastic free-kick strike from Frank Lampard before Florent Malouda's last-gasp fifth - ensuring their advancement to face Liverpool in the final on May 5.

The game started on a sour note as a pocket of Chelsea fans jeered during a pre-match minute's silence in memory of those who died at the Hillsborough disaster as well as Livorno midfielder Piermario Morosini.

Spurs nearly took the lead on 36 minutes when Van der Vaart met Aaron Lennon's cross, but his header met Terry on the line, whose knee kept it out.

If Adebayor had got a similar touch with his knee when he lunged to meet a stunning cross from the right from Van der Vaart, it might again have been 1-0, but as it was the delivery bypassed both he and Cech before coming back off the post.

And Spurs' failure to capitalise was punished when Drogba struck. Out of nothing, the striker received the ball with his back to goal.

He seemed to be heading away from danger when he touched it to the left, but instead swivelled around Gallas and hammered it left-footed past the helpless Cudicini.

Controversy struck just after half time as an almighty scramble in the box saw players pile up along the line and Mata get a shot into the melee.

From some distance away, referee Atkinson ruled that it crossed the line, but television replays appeared inconclusive whilst Spurs protested.

Tottenham, though, got back into it within five minutes. Adebayor powered through the centre and Cech rushed forward to meet him. The keeper brought the Togolese down clearly but was spared a red card as Bale was on hand to knock it into the net.

Ramires restored Chelsea's two-goal buffer in the 77th minute. Assou-Ekotto's deep position allowed Mata to dink the ball forward for the advanced Ramires without fear of offside, the pass picking him out perfectly, and the Brazilian promptly buried it.

Lampard made it 4-1 when he fired in a wicked free kick from long range, before substitute Malouda confirmed the rout by finishing between Cudicini's legs following a Mata assist.

Article

Cahill relishes Spurs semi

12 April 2012 12:52

Chelsea defender Gary Cahill said playing Tottenham in the semi-final of the FA Cup is a 'defining moment' in the Blues' season.

Roberto Di Matteo's men will take on Spurs at Wembley three days before meeting Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final and Cahill claims the Blues are feeling confident ahead of the games.

"We're positive because of the results of late," Cahill told FATV.

"So we're confident, but there is also a realisation of how big the game (against Tottenham) is.

"It's a defining moment of the season."

Interim boss Di Matteo appears to have stepped seamlessly into the role of manager, and Cahill cited the Italian's knowledge of the Chelsea set-up as a big factor in his early success.

"The lads have taken to him well and he's been in and around the set-up for a while now, so he knows how we work and the lads know how he works," he said.

"He's a good guy and he's a good manager as well, so it's going really well at the minute."

The former Bolton man also added he was anticipating a stern test at Wembley despite Spurs' poor recent form with Harry Redknapp's team having won only one of their last eight Premier League matches.

"They're a hard team and Harry has turned them into a real force," he said.

"It's going to be a tough game."


Article

Redknapp expects semi-final fireworks

28 March 2012 14:02

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp is expecting two hotly contested FA Cup semi-finals after the draw threw up a London and a Merseyside derby.

Arch rivals Liverpool and Everton are set to do battle at Wembley on April 14 while Redknapp's Spurs are set for a showdown will London rivals Chelsea a day later.

Tottenham ousted Bolton 3-1 in their re-arranged fixture at White Hart Lane on Tuesday thanks to goals from Ryan Nelsen, Gareth Bale and a late stunner from Louis Saha to ensure the two mouth-watering semi-final ties.

"I am looking forward to it (the semi-final), it will be a great weekend," Redknapp said.

"Two great games - a London derby and a Merseyside derby with Everton and Liverpool, two fantastic games.

"I think all four teams could (win the FA Cup), you wouldn't like to pick a winner would you."

The London tie will have added spice given both sides are fighting for the final Champions League spot, with Tottenham still in fourth place, five points clear of Chelsea following their 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

Everton booked their place in the last four with a 2-0 win over Sunderland in their quarter-final replay to set up a clash with local rivals Liverpool, who have already won the Carling Cup.

"Everton and Liverpool are both capable of winning the cup aren't they. Chelsea have gone to Benfica and won in the Champions League, a fantastic result but it is wide open really," Redknapp said.

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 3 +7 9
2 3 +5 9
3 2 +5 6
4 3 +3 6
5 2 +1 4

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 3 +7 9
2 3 +5 9
3 2 +5 6
4 3 +3 6
5 2 +1 4