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Carlo Ancelotti insisted that José Mourinho's return to Stamford Bridge was just a sideshow as Chelsea FC bid to overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit against FC Internazionale Milano in the UEFA Champions League first knockout round. The former Chelsea manager, meanwhile, said he would not be letting emotions sway him from his task of taking Inter to the quarter-finals for the first time since 2005/06. "Don't confuse respect and feelings for ex-players and an ex-club with motivation to win the game," Mourinho said.
Carlo Ancelotti, Chelsea manager
The players are not distracted by [Mourinho's return]. Mourinho will come back and for him it will be a special evening. I think the fans will give him the very good reception that he deserves but the match will be another thing. All the players, from Chelsea and Inter, are focused on the game, an important game, and they are not interested in other things.
We've come out of the slight downturn we experienced a couple of weeks ago. We played well against Inter and against West Ham on Saturday. But tomorrow we have to do our best. We have to show our best football, better organisation and concentration. We are sure we will win if we do this on the pitch. I don't think we need to think about Inter not playing well. We know over the course of the season they have shown themselves to be a top quality team.
José Mourinho, Inter coach
Special for me would be to bring Inter over the barrier they have had for a few years of not even going to the quarter-finals. Special for me is to bring the team into the next stage. I'll read the game the best I can, make the best decisions I can, influence it in the best possible way and give everything I have to help my team win.
Before the game, and after, Chelsea are different and I have to be different. It is the same players and supporters who made me feel incredible every time we played in this stadium. I did more than enough to be here but the decision was made. Chelsea moved forwards, I moved forwards. They moved on, I moved on. I keep winning important things, they keep winning something. They won an FA Cup. The most important thing is the relationship we had.
Don't confuse emotional control with professionalism and with desire to win. I watched Inter versus Chelsea [first leg] seven times. I did not let it run – I stopped and went back and stopped again. I have given everything to prepare for this game. Don't confuse respect and feelings for ex-players and an ex-club with motivation to win the game. Tomorrow after the game I will still be the special one, win or lose.
Out: Ashley Cole (ankle), Michael Essien (knee), José Bosingwa (knee), Deco (knee), Henrique Hilário (groin), Petr Čech (calf)
Misses next match if booked: Michael Essien, Salomon Kalou
• With both Čech and Hilário injured, Ancelotti said Ross Turnbull would start against Inter, having made his Premier League debut for the club in Saturday's 4-1 win against West Ham United FC, explaining: "Turnbull played well on Saturday. He is a confident lad and we have a lot of faith in him."
• Ricardo Carvalho has recovered from a hamstring strain.
Out: Cristian Chivu (fractured skull)
Doubtful: Mario Balotelli (knee), Davide Santon (knee)
Misses next match if booked: Lucio, Walter Samuel, Maicon, Javier Zanetti, Thiago Motta
• Balotelli suffered a blow to his right knee in training ahead of Friday's trip to Calcio Catania. He and Santon will have fitness tests on Monday.
• Wesley Sneijder was taken ill on Monday but should play.
13/03/10 Chelsea 4-1 West Ham United FC
(Alex 16, Drogba 56 90, Malouda 77; Parker 30)
• Despite an equaliser from former midfielder Scott Parker, Chelsea beat their London rivals to stay within two points of leaders Manchester United FC with a game in hand.
• Chelsea have now conceded more goals in a Premier League season than in any full campaign since 2003/04, prior to Mourinho's arrival.
12/03/10 Calcio Catania 3-1 Inter
(Maxi López 74, Mascara 81pen, Martínez 90; Milito 54)
• Sulley Muntari was brought on with 11 minutes left and promptly received two yellow cards, the second for a handball which led to Giuseppe Mascara's penalty.
• The end of Inter's 17-game unbeaten run allowed AC Milan to cut their Serie A lead to a single point.
• Chelsea have reached at least the semi-finals on five out of their last six campaigns, but in 2005/06 under Mourinho they fell in the first knockout round after a 2-1 first-leg defeat before drawing 1-1 at FC Barcelona.
• Inter have gone out in this round three years running, in the last two seasons falling to Manchester United and Liverpool FC, but of 41 UEFA ties where they have won a home first leg, they have recorded 37 aggregate victories.
• Just like the first leg, both of Ancelotti and Mourinho's meetings in Serie A finished as home wins last season, albeit in Milan and Inter's shared San Siro. Ancelotti's Milan were 1-0 victors in their 'home' game while the return ended 2-0 to Inter.
• Chelsea will hope for a repeat of the result when they faced Inter in an American friendly in Pasadena's Rose Bowl on 22 July, Didier Drogba's deflected goal and Frank Lampard's penalty earning a 2-0 win in front of 81,224 fans.
Did you know?
• The last time Inter won a home European first leg 2-1, they were then beaten 1-0 at Villarreal CF to fall in the 2005/06 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.
Read more on the match in the official UEFA Champions League press kit.
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