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Conte must set the example


Chelsea's John Terry ruled out of Man City FA Cup tie with hamstring injury

LONDON -- Chelsea captain John Terry will not be fit to face Manchester City in Sunday's FA Cup tie at Stamford Bridge, interim manager Guus Hiddink has said.

Terry opted not to travel with the Chelsea squad for Tuesday's Champions League round-of-16 first-leg clash with Paris Saint-Germain after tweaking a hamstring and hobbling off during the win over Newcastle three days earlier.

Gary Cahill and Branislav Ivanovic earned praise for their performances at the Parc des Princes in Terry's absence despite defeat to the French champions.

And the pair are set to renew their partnership in the fifth round match against City after Hiddink confirmed that his captain was not ready to return.

"He will not be fit for this weekend," Hiddink said. "I saw him this morning. He worked with physios, yesterday he was trying a bit on the pitch, but he still has too many problems to be fit for the weekend.

"We have a week [before playing Southampton in the Premier League]. I hope next weekend he will be available. I cannot predict it, and I think we must be a bit cautious with him as well. He likes to be there every day, but we must be careful. Maybe next weekend.

"Of course it's a disappointment because he's the leader of this club and this team. But I'm not going to complain or moan. The guys who are putting their effort in his place have my full confidence, and they have already had a decent performance in Paris."

Chelsea are favourites on Sunday, with City boss Manuel Pellegrini saying he will field a weakened City side as he prioritises the first leg of the Champions League round-of-16 tie against Dynamo Kiev three days later.

But Hiddink is not ruling out the possibility that his counterpart could be playing mind games and said: "Whatever my well-respected colleague says he might also have a lot of interest in the FA Cup, so let's see what happens on Sunday. We'll take ourselves and them very seriously."

The FA Cup holds happy memories for Hiddink, who ended his first interim spell as Chelsea manager as the winner of the 2009 competition.

"I came here in December and we said let's get as soon as possible away from the relegation zone," he said. "We're now climbing the table and that was the first target. The second was to see if we could get into the FA Cup final.

"It's always a bonus if you get a cup. We're not talking about the financial part of it -- the bonus is to win something that's forever remarkable. It would be beautiful for everyone."

Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.


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