Football

Hiddink: Blues trophy hunt is not over

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Guus Hiddink is ready to concentrate on a cup double after conceding Chelsea are realistically out of the race for the Barclays Premier League title.

Hiddink insisted that it was now time to focus on the Champions League and the FA Cup after their goalless stalemate against Everton at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night.

"It is difficult but we now have to focus on only two other roads - the Champions League and, later on in May, Everton again in the FA Cup final," admitted Hiddink.

Chelsea face Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final, first leg at the Nou Camp next Tuesday and Hiddink is considering giving some of his players a rest against West Ham on Saturday.

He is already without centre-half Ricardo Carvalho for the trip to Spain, the Portuguese having suffered a recurrence of his hamstring problem.

But in a dress rehearsal for the FA Cup final at the end of May, Chelsea and Everton served up an entertaining draw that was dominated by goalkeepers.

Chelsea's Petr Cech and Everton's Tim Howard produced fine solo performances to preserve the deadlock which, coupled with Manchester United's 2-0 victory over Portsmouth, put an end to any remaining title ambitions for Hiddink's side.

The Blues are six points adrift of leaders United who have a game in hand and Hiddink added: "Everyone is disappointed. We knew it was difficult to go for the title so when you drop two points there is disappointment of course.

"But this team is able to cope with that and focus ourselves on the difficult game against Barcelona next week."

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Topics:
Portsmouth
Petr Cech
Football
Chelsea
Tim Howard
Premier League
Ricardo Carvalho
Manchester United
Everton

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