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Thursday, February 05, 2009

Frank Lampard available - but red card referee Mike Riley 'injured' And Quaresma Handed No 18 Started Training At Cobham

Frank Lampard available - but red card referee Mike Riley 'injured'

Frank Lampard is red-carded by Mike Riley (Pic:Getty)

Frank Lampard had his red card against Liverpool overturned yesterday and will be available for Chelsea's next three games.

But blunder ref Mike Riley will not take charge of a match this weekend after suffering an unspecified "injury" during the Anfield clash.

Lampard was dismissed by the Yorkshire official after 60 minutes of Liverpool's 2-0 win for a challenge on Xabi Alonso.

Tv replays showed he played the ball first. He is now free to play against Hull and Aston Villa and in the FA Cup fifth round tie with Watford.

Lampard also had a red card against West Ham 10 months ago rescinded on appeal.

Assistant referee Mo Matadar saw the incident when Jose Bosingwa put his studs in Yossi Benayoun's back, so the FA can't take any further action against him.


Posted on: Wed 04 Feb 2009

Frank Lampard was quietly confident he would not be sitting out the next three games but does not wish to criticise referees following his latest successful claim for wrongful dismissal.

The Chelsea vice-captain discovered yesterday that the red card shown by Mike Riley was considered a mistake by an FA commission, the second time in a year one has found in his favour after a sending-off.

Speaking having learned the verdict, Lampard said:

'I expected it to be rescinded anyway. It was obviously a mistake, we all make mistakes, footballers make mistakes as much as anyone and the referee did so.

'It is good for me that I don't miss more games but I lost half-an-hour. Playing half-an-hour with 10 men obviously puts your back right up against the wall.

'It was a mistake but I don't want to have a go at referees about it because they do a very hard job and I respect them very much. It is just a shame that we lost the game because of it.'

Despite being on the wrong end of an erroneous decision, Lampard remains unconvinced by the idea of video replays in such cases.

'I don't know about fouls like that because it is very difficult to keep stopping the game for any foul, you open up a big door to look at every foul that happens.

'All I think it needs is referees to have time to consult the other officials. There are four of them now and they are getting different angles. And to use common sense.

'For players that don't necessarily go around kicking and trying to hurt people, you have to understand that even if you are at the wrong angle, a player is not trying to hurt people.'

Chelsea's new loan signing Ricardo Quaresma can rip the Premier League apart.

That is the opinion of the winger’s new Stamford Bridge team-mate Ricardo Carvalho.

Big Phil Scolari beat Spurs manager Harry Redknapp to grab livewire Quaresma, 25, from Inter Milan on Monday.

And Portuguese defender Carvalho is adamant his international team-mate can be a big hit in English football and give the Chelsea team a huge lift.

The former Porto star was brought in with just minutes to go before the transfer deadline closed – after Joe Cole was ruled out for the season with a cruciate ligament injury.

And Carvalho said: “Quaresma is a very fast and explosive player who is a real warrior on the pitch, so he will be able to handle the physical nature of the Premier League.

“But at the same time he is a very technical player and can score goals, which will be good for us.

“He will be a huge help to us at this time of the season.

“He is a very attacking player and that is what we need at Chelsea at the moment.” Quaresma has always been interested in the Premier League, according to Carvalho.

“At different times with the Portugal national team he would always ask about English football and was interested in what it was like,” the Blues centre-half explained.

“He could have come here last summer but he ended up going to Inter Milan with Jose Mourinho – but it has not worked out for him there.”

Scolari had an immediate advantage over Redknapp because he has worked with the winger before, during his time as Portugal’s national team boss.

And Carvalho thinks that, plus the number of Portuguese players at the club, will help Quaresma settle into life at Chelsea quickly.

Carvalho added: “Scolari knows Quaresma well and this is an advantage for us.

“He also knows a lot of players here already, but he will need time to adapt.

“He will add more pace, which is important. Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba will love playing with him because he gets a lot of assists.

“We have to be strong between now and the end of the season after the defeat to Liverpool.

“I just want to get back to help out.”


Posted on: Wed 04 Feb 2009

The snow hasn't yet cleared, but the players, including new boy Ricardo Quaresma, were back at Cobham for training on Wednesday, with the return of a competitive element inside the dome.

As the training pitches are still lying underneath a fair few inches of snow, Luiz Felipe Scolari again took his squad inside our all-weather dome, which boasts the latest artificial playing surface as well as a covering from the conditions.

Just like he did in early January, Scolari brought competition to the session, with the squad split into four six-man teams.


After introductions and a warm-up, where he chatted with Deco, and a quick game of keep-ball, Quaresma was thrust into action alongside captain John Terry, Petr Cech, Mineiro, Juliano Belletti and Nicolas Anelka.

They put up a valiant effort, but came unstuck against the stars of the day - young goalkeeper Aldi Haxhia, Ashley Cole, Alex, Deco, Miroslav Stoch and Didier Drogba - all of whom were on form.

Deco in particular shone with some classy touches and accurate passing in limited space, while managing to strike a post four times in one game. Drogba and Stoch were clinical, while Ashley Cole scored arguably the day's best goal.

Latching on to a clipped Deco free-kick, Cole turned and volleyed home in one motion, a finish deserving of the win.

Unlike in January, there was no Ray Wilkins on playing duty, his role was the same as the other staff, to oversee and referee the games.

With the session complete, there were naturally a few snowballs thrown on the way in, before Salomon Kalou and Jose Bosingwa took things further and had their own private battle.

Snow fight