Chelsea have been handed a timely boost with the news that Ashley Cole is ready to make a return to training after recovering from a fractured ankle.
The England full-back suffered the injury in his side's 2-1 defeat at Everton in February as he challenged America international Landon Donovan.
But the former Arsenal man is expected to return for the Blues' title run-in at the end of April and, with Wayne Bridge having made himself unavailable for international duty in the wake of his off-field problems with John Terry, England coach Fabio Capello will also be breathing a sigh of relief.
Speaking to reporters, Ancelotti said: "Ashley Cole is closer to playing.
"I think he will need some days to train and we hope he is available for the game against Stoke on April 25.
"Ashley is an important player for England and after the season they still have a month to get ready, so he will be ready for sure, but I have not spoken to Capello."