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Mikel aiming to upset mentor Mourinho
Published : 24 Feb 2010 08:58:02
John Obi Mikel lines up against his former mentor on Wednesday night aiming for a double over Jose Mourinho.
Chelsea met Inter Milan at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena in July and won the game 2-0 and now the sides meet in Champions League action at the San Siro with Mourinho up against his former club for the first time in a competitive fixture.
Mikel, brought to Chelsea by Mourinho, said: "Mourinho is the man who brought me to Chelsea and this is the first time I will play against him, though we played in a friendly and won 2-0. It is a soft spot but we have to do what we did in the friendly and win the game."
Chelsea, now coached by former AC Milan boss Carlo Ancelotti, will be looking to take some kind of advantage back to Stamford Bridge for the return leg of their last-16 tie.
When asked to compare Mourinho with his current coach, Mikel was full of praise for both men as the Nigeria midfielder added: "They are both very good managers and I am really pleased to work under both of them.
"Ancelotti has come in and brought a different mentality to the way we play, playing a diamond system and I think it has been really effective. We have to just keep supporting the manager and playing to his instructions."
Ancelotti must deal with a defensive crisis, but the Italian is confident Juliano Belletti can fill the void at left-back.
The Brazilian utility player has been out for a month with a knee injury, but is set to come in for the injured duo Yury Zhirkov and Ashley Cole.
Zhirkov is out with a calf problem and Cole is sidelined with a broken ankle, while Paulo Ferreira, who has deputised at left-back before, is not registered for Champions League competition.
"Definitely it's a problem, we are missing two important players," Ancelotti conceded. "Belletti is back, he has been training all week and has been training well. We will definitely find a solution, however, Ashley Cole and Zhirkov are going to be missed."