Mourinho is not my ghost - Ancelotti

23 April 2010 04:09
Carlo Ancelotti insists he is not haunted by the ghost of Jose Mourinho as Chelsea prepare for another massive weekend in the title race.

The Blues have not won the Premier League crown since they captured it under Mourinho's tenure in 2006 and Joe Cole maintains they have to win the title in order to shake off the spectre of Mourinho's reign.

But Ancelotti is not concerned with Mourinho's legacy ahead of Sunday's crucial clash with Stoke at Stamford Bridge.

"I understand two things, ghost and Mourinho," Ancelotti said. "Maybe it's true if Joe Cole says this, but Mourinho is not my ghost.

"He's a very good coach. He's doing a fantastic job at Inter. He did a fantastic Champions League semi-final against Barcelona. But now it's a different story."

However, Cole said: "The fact we have not won the title since Mourinho is probably hanging over us.

"We have only won one cup since then and been within the width of a post of winning the Champions League.

"We're hoping it's going to happen this season. We have put ourselves in a great position. Jose is a great manager but he is not the be all and end all for a football club, no one is. It's about the dynamics and how the club works.

"The most frustrating thing for us really is that we should be six or seven points clear."

Chelsea will be without suspended captain John Terry against Stoke, while midfielder John Mikel Obi has ankle ligament damage.

But Didier Drogba's recurring groin problem is under control and the Ivorian is expected to start.

Chelsea boast a one-point lead at the summit but would be overtaken by Manchester United if they beat Tottenham at home tomorrow.

Ancelotti is determined to remain calm with three matches left and may even go to the cinema instead of watching United's game.

"Stress is the engine of life for me. You have to cope with the pressure, the stress," Ancelotti said.

"That's why rather than watching the game, it'd be better to go to the cinema. I don't know what's on. There are fantastic films on, maybe I will go and watch 'Clash of the Titans'."

The Italian admits his squad are beginning to feel the heat as the title run-in reaches its climax, but he insists such anxiety is normal considering what is at stake.

"The players feel the pressure now because Chelsea are very close to winning the title for the first time in three years," he added. "They are very close and, maybe, they feel more pressure.

"But this is absolutely normal. It's better to have this than to stay 10 points behind and not have anything to play for.

"We have a great possibility, a great opportunity to win and so we have to stay calm, quiet and have to prepare well for the games until the end of the season without emotion.

"We have to stay very composed, focused and concentrated because we have three important games. Every game could be difficult, but we have a very big opportunity to win. We don't want to miss out on this chance.

"We are one point clear and that could be enough, that could be an advantage. The title is in our hands. We are not interested in the results of the other teams. We need to win the three games to bring the title home.

"Stoke are a dangerous team. They use a lot of throw-ins and free-kicks, they are a strong, physical team."

Playing a day later than United is not a problem, according to Ancelotti, even though the Blues lost 2-1 at Tottenham last weekend after United's victory over rivals City.

"We analysed the Tottenham performance and we made a mistake," admitted Ancelotti. "But we've worked this week to avoid making it again, maintaining a good atmosphere in the squad.

"Now's not the time to look back. We must look forward. We have prepared very well for this game, and we have to win.

"We don't have the pressure because we play second. We have training tomorrow morning and we are not interested in their result.

"I am excited in this moment because it's a very important moment of the season, maybe the most important moment. There's a good excitement, good atmosphere.

"I'm not afraid and I know football very well. At the end of the season, you have to reach your aims."

Source: Team_Talk