Stamford Bridge: Home of Chelsea(credit: Leigh Copson)
Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti has hinted Fernando Torres will start in tonight’s Champions League clash with Manchester United.
Torres is yet to score in 10 appearances for the club since his £50m switch from Liverpool during the January transfer window, and there had been suggestions that Ancelotti could leave the Spaniard on the bench and opt for the partnership of Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka.
However, Ancelotti said: “Criticism (of Torres) is not in Chelsea. It's outside Chelsea. We have seen Torres play well for the team.
“He didn't score, obviously. He's not happy for this reason, but he played well for the team.
“I hope he plays the same tomorrow - for the team.”
Ancelotti will be forced to make one change at the back due to David Luiz being cup-tied, meaning Branislav Ivanovic is likely to partner John Terry in the centre of defence with Alex still not fully fit following his knee injury.
Meanwhile, Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is hoping Wayne Rooney will recover from a bruised shin in time to play at Stamford Bridge.
Ferguson could receive a huge boost if Rio Ferdinand is declared fit following his calf injury, and Anderson has returned to training following a knee problem.
Jonny Evans is available having been suspended at the weekend and Rafael da Silva has overcome a hamstring injury, but Darren Fletcher (virus), John O’Shea (hamstring) and Wes Brown (unspecified) are ruled out.