Cup holders delighted by Ipswich rout

Carlo Ancelotti refused to get carried away with Chelsea's 7-0 FA Cup thrashing of Ipswich yesterday, admitting they needed a run of victories to emerge from their worst slump for almost 15 years.

The Blues went some way to lifting the gloom at Stamford Bridge as they began their defence of the trophy they have won for the past two seasons in emphatic fashion.

The managerless visitors proved ideal cannon fodder for Ancelotti's faltering double winners, who had won just one of their previous nine league games to all but surrender the championship.

The Chelsea boss, who has twice been given votes of confidence by billionaire owner Roman Abramovich in the past fortnight, said: "We needed to have this kind of performance. The result was good and we did a lot of things well in this game - the performance of the team, the strikers scoring again. We don't have to be excited.

"But, obviously, with this victory, our confidence will improve."

Ancelotti's policy of fielding some youngsters in the early rounds of the cup worked well, with Daniel Sturridge and Frank Lampard scoring twice, Salomon Kalou also finding the net and Nicolas Anelka ending the goal drought that has coincided with Chelsea's two months of misery.

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