Football

Ancelotti notes Anelka importance

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Carlo Ancelotti has full confidence in Nicolas Anelka's striking prowess as the former France international prepares to spearhead Chelsea's attack against Marseille in the Champions League on Tuesday night.

Chelsea won their opening game in Group F 4-1 against Slovakian minnows MSK Zilina, with Anelka getting on the scoresheet twice. Ancelotti will be looking for more of the same from the former France international, especially against the French champions.

"I don't think he will be afraid or scared because the game is on French television," said Ancelotti. "He is in a fantastic moment and he will play for the team as he always does."

He added: "He is able to play in every position up front. For his kind of skills he is perfect to play up front because he has speed, he has quality and he can support the players who come from midfield.

"He is a fantastic striker for this reason. He is able to play in every position on the pitch."

Ancelotti confirmed that England midfielder Frank Lampard's hernia problem has forced him out of the game against Marseille and England's next Euro 2012 qualifier against Montenegro next month.

Also missing are injured striker Salomon Kalou and midfielder Yossi Benayoun and although Chelsea suffered their first league defeat of the season against Manchester City last Saturday, following their Carling Cup exit to Newcastle, Ancelotti remains largely unconcerned.

"I said before Saturday that it would be very difficult to be unbeaten during the season because it is very competitive here," said Ancelotti.

"I don't ask my players for a reaction. We have to play our football and pay attention. Marseille will look to get three points from this game because they lost the first one."

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Topics:
Football
Nicolas Anelka
Chelsea
UEFA Champions League

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