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Zenit sign Bart Simpson

The Toe Poke 12 hours ago
Read
May 16, 2012

RDM urges veterans to take last chance

Roberto Di Matteo has told his Chelsea veterans that this is likely to be their last chance to lift the Champions League trophy - and Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger admits the German side are concerned by that state of affairs.

Ashley Cole, Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard are all the wrong side of 30, and if Chelsea do not beat Bayern in Saturday's final, they will not play in the competition next season - so the door is closing on that trio.

"We've got a fantastic group with quality and experience and that has shown in games," Di Matteo said. "That's shown by them carrying us to this final. To reach a Champions League final is very, very difficult.

"Even for younger players, they do not know when they'll have the chance again to be in a final like this. For some of our older players, it might be more difficult to be in another final, or win it."

Meanwhile, Germany international Schweinsteiger said: "Those players like Lampard, Drogba, Cole and [29-year-old Michael] Essien, who were in Moscow for the final [in 2008, when they lost to Manchester United], will have extra motivation.

"They will be the most dangerous, they know maybe it is their last chance to try and win it."

Meanwhile, interim Blues boss Di Matteo has distanced himself from talk of a return to West Brom if he fails to land the full-time role at Stamford Bridge.

"In my life I've gone back to an ex-girlfriend and it didn't work out," Di Matteo said. "I'm not sure whether it's the right move."

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