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Derlei aiming to face Deportivo

Published: Monday 3 May 2004, 22.55CET
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Published: Monday 3 May 2004, 22.55CET

Derlei aiming to face Deportivo

The UEFA Champions League semi-finals conclude this week with second-leg action on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The UEFA Champions League semi-finals conclude this week with second-leg action on Tuesday and Wednesday. takes a look at the early team news.

RC Deportivo La Coruña (0) v (0) FC Porto - Tuesday

Mauro Silva and Andrade suspended
Spanish side Deportivo warmed up for the visit of Porto with a 2-0 home victory against Real Madrid CF on Saturday night. The home side were able to rest several key players including Noureddine Naybet and Juan Carlos Valerón but still had too much for a full-strength Madrid. Coach Javier Irureta will have to replace the suspended Mauro Silva and Jorge Andrade, both of whom figured against Madrid.

Defensive poser
Sergio González is likely to start instead of Mauro Silva while Irureta will have to decide between Héctor Berenguel and Pablo Amo to fill the gap left by Andrade. Irureta is hoping the fans will play their part at the Riazor. "When we have played important matches here, the support has contributed at least ten per cent," he said.

Derlei back
Porto played on Friday night, losing 1-0 at Rio Ave FC. However, having already seen his side clinch the title, coach José Mourinho left out several players. Of more importance to Mourinho is the return of Brazilian striker Derlei who has been absent since December with a knee injury. The 28-year-old came through his second match to prove his fitness. His possible strike partner Benni McCarthy knows Porto face a tough task. McCarthy said: "It will be very tough to eliminate them, but I would say that there is a 50-50 possibility for each side."

Suspension fears
One factor for several players from both sides this week will be the threat of suspension, should they reach the final. Deportivo have seven players who are one caution away from a ban including striker Walter Pandiani, while Porto go into the match with Deco among eight players at risk.

Chelsea FC (1) v (3) AS Monaco FC - Wednesday

French duo out
The suspension of Marcel Desailly and Claude Makelele for this week's second leg meant Chelsea coach Claudio Ranieri was forced to shuffle his pack in Saturday's 4-0 home victory against Southampton FC. Both Frenchmen were dropped for the match giving Ranieri a chance to see young German defender Robert Huth alongside John Terry at the back and Cameroonian international Gérémi in central midfield.

Cudicini returns
"I know roughly my team for Wednesday," said Ranieri. "For this reason, I put Makelele on the bench because I wanted to see Gérémi and Frank Lampard together in the middle." Chelsea also welcomed back regular No1 Carlo Cudicini and he should start, although he, like Terry and forward Adrian Mutu who is also struggling with injury, are all one yellow card from suspension. Chelsea will also miss Republic of Ireland winger Damien Duff, who has a dislocated shoulder.

Pršo eager
Monaco are without the suspended midfield player Akis Zikos but arguably of more concern to coach Didier Deschamps are the possible absences of forward Dado Pršo and winger Jérôme Rothen. Rothen sustained a groin injury during Monaco's 2-1 Ligue 1 win at OGC Nice on Friday, and Croatian international Pršo picked up a foot injury. "I'm ready to take the risk for this game and recover later," said Pršo.

Squillaci hope
Like his Croatian team-mate, French international Rothen will also make the trip to England to allow a decision to be made as late as possible. Another possible starter at Stamford Bridge will be central defender Sébastien Squillaci, who had been struggling with a thigh problem but has been given the all-clear to travel to London.

Last updated: 03/05/04 19.54CET

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