Ancelotti takes heart from stalemate

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Carlo Ancelotti was determined to find the positives from Chelsea's goalless draw at Birmingham despite his side continuing their recent indifferent form.

Failure to take three points from the west midlands left Ancelotti's side with a recent record of only one win in five league games.

"It is not a good result for us but, as for what we did on the pitch, I think we played well," said the Italian coach.

"We had a lot of chances, showed very good heart and the goalkeeper for Birmingham (Joe Hart) made very good saves."

While the Barclays Premier League leaders enjoyed the better chances, it was Birmingham who had the ball in the net in the first half, Christian Benitez poking it over the line and apparently being played onside by an injured Didier Drogba only to see the flag raised against him.

The visitors, looking to extend a four-point lead over second-placed Manchester United, had excellent chances to win it themselves as Branislav Ivanovic, Daniel Sturridge, Alex and Florent Malouda all went close. Malouda, meanwhile, was dismissed in the closing stages after receiving a second caution.

Ancelotti added: "We are disappointed with the result but not for the performance of the team. We improved after the last time against West Ham (a 1-1 draw).

"We played well, Birmingham tried to play the counter-attack. It was a difficult game for us but I think that Chelsea did the best in this moment."

As for Benitez's disallowed effort, Ancelotti was non-committal.

"I don't know if it was right because I was a long distance from it and didn't see it well," he said. "I think the assistant referee was in a better position."

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Branislav Ivanovic
Didier Drogba
Joe Hart
Florent Malouda
Premier League
Christian Benitez
Manchester United
Daniel Sturridge

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