Walters: We have no fear

CHAMPIONS' League finalists they may have been but fearless Jon Walters believes Chelsea are not invincible in the domestic cups.

Derek Davis

CHAMPIONS' League finalists they may have been but fearless Jon Walters believes Chelsea are not invincible in the domestic cups.

Fresh on the back of a 4-1 win at Crystal Palace Ipswich go to Chelsea, who needed a late, late goal to beat Stoke City, on Saturday ready to cause another upset.

The Londoners have already been dumped out of the League Cup by Championship opposition, and they needed a replay to ease past Southend in the previous round of the FA Cup.


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Walters takes heart from those results and is relaxed ahead of the trip.

He said: “You never know. Burnley beat them on penalties and Southend got a draw there, so they are not unbeatable.

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“It is XI v XI so we can go there and enjoy it.”

A Didier Drogba goal wasn't enough to save Chelsea as Ade Akinbiyi ensured Burnley took them to extra time and the Clarets then triumphed 5-4 on penalties. It also needed a late goal to force a replay against Southend, where they went behind before winning 4-1.

Although Joe Cole has been ruled out for the rest of the season with ruptured ligaments and John Terry is a doubt with a back problem, Chelsea's roll call still has a formidable look about it.

Frank Lampard was credited with the winner on Saturday in his 400th Chelsea appearance, although Michael Ballack looked to have got the last and telling touch, Ricardo Carvalho, and Nicolas Anelka are among the household names Town will face, but not be fazed by, according to Walters.

He said: “For me it doesn't matter whose names are on the team sheet, you respect the team but at the end of the day you are just playing against another player, so all you can do is go out and do your best.”

Apart from the two below-par results against Championship sides, Chelsea have recently recovered from a wobble at home and have gone five matches without defeat at Stamford Bridge since losing 2-1 to Arsenal.

Although Walters has enjoyed Premier League football with Blackburn as a teenager, he has not had the pleasure of visiting Stamford Bridge - until now.

He added: “I have been to most Premier League grounds but not Chelsea. It one to look forward to.”

Ipswich hope to have Ben Thatcher back from a virus and David Wright is in training after a hamstring problem. If Wright doesn't make it then Alex Bruce will stay at right-back. Bruce has also been called up into the full Republic of Ireland squad to face Georgia next month.

The game at Stamford Bridge is already a complete sell-out.

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