Sun | Jan 29, 2023

Chelsea advance

Published:Sunday | February 14, 2010 | 12:00 AM

LONDON (AP):Holders Chelsea had to step up a gear in the second half to reach the FA Cup quarter-finals yesterday with a 4-1 victory over Cardiff, and Manchester City will have to play Stoke again after being held 1-1.

Chelsea's fifth-round match was also level at 1-1 after Didier Drogba's second-minute goal was cancelled out by Michael Chopra.

But the Premier League leaders took control after the break as Michael Ballack, Daniel Sturridge and Salomon Kalou scored to extend the club's unbeaten home run to 37 matches.

"They caused us a lot of problems in the first half," Chelsea assistant manager Ray Wilkins said. "But thankfully, we managed to up the tempo in the second half."

Shaun Wright-Phillips gave Man City an early lead before Stoke levelled at the start of the second half when Ricardo Fuller headed in Rory Delap's long throw-in.

There will also be a replay between Reading and West Bromwich Albion after the League Championship teams drew 2-2.

Portsmouth beat south-coast rival Southampton 4-1 to advance and Birmingham beat second-tier club Derby 2-1.

The Chelsea defence was shorn of captain John Terry, who has been allowed to travel to Dubai to see his wife following newspaper allegations about his private life, and left back Ashley Cole, who is out for three months after breaking his left ankle.

fourth goal in three games

It didn't seem the duo would be missed when Jon Obi Mikel's through ball from the halfway line fell into Drogba's path and the Cte d'Ivoire forward flicked it over goalkeeper David Marshall.

But Drogba's fourth goal in three games since returning from the African Cup of Nations didn't curb Cardiff's ambitions.

It took a one-handed save from Chelsea goalkeeper Henrique Hilario to turn Anthony Gerrard's header wide. From the resulting corner, the unmarked Chopra nodded just over.

Cardiff's aerial threat was unsettling Chelsea and the 2008 finalists levelled in the 34th when Chopra evaded his marker and headed low into the net from Chris Burke's cross.

Chelsea replaced the ineffective Joe Cole with Kalou at the break, with Wilkins saying that the England winger still needs time to get back into "tip top form" after returning in September from an eight-month injury layoff.

Chelsea went back in front in the 51st minute when Drogba chipped through to Ballack and the Germany midfielder lifted the ball over Marshall.

Cardiff never provided the same threat or resilience as it had in the first half. Sturridge poked the ball through Marshall's legs in the 69th to score for the third consecutive round, and Kalou headed in Chelsea's fourth in the 86th from Paulo Ferreira's cross.

England coach Fabio Capello was at Eastlands to see World Cup hopeful Shaun Wright-Phillips exploit a blunder by Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross to put City ahead in the 11th.