Mokoena gearing up for big summer

Mokoena helped the cash-strapped Fratton Park outfit to an

unexpected 2-0 victory over Tottenham in the semi-final at Wembley

on Sunday. The Championship-bound club, who became the first

Premier League team to plunge into administration in February, will

now tackle multi-millionaires Chelsea in the final. Following his

side’s date with Carlo Ancelotti’s side on May 15, Mokoena will fly

back to his homeland to skipper South Africa at the first-ever

World Cup staged on African soil. And he sees no reason why he

cannot make the trip with an FA Cup winner’s medal tucked in his

hand luggage. He said: “I’ll take this FA Cup final as a dress

rehearsal for the World Cup. It’s a dream come true for me to play

in the FA Cup final. “I’ve been involved in semis before, but to

see myself in the final is amazing. It’s great before the World Cup

as well and will give me a real morale boost. “We’re playing

against one of the best teams in the world, but it depends on who

shows up on the day. Being in the final, anything is possible. “It

would be amazing for the club to lift that trophy and then take a

winner’s medal to the World Cup. It would be tremendous and

hopefully it will happen.” Mokoena is suffering with a tight groin

and is a doubt for Pompey’s Premier League trip to Wigan tonight.

The former Blackburn man is one of a large number of the squad

nursing injuries and hoping desperately to be fit to face Chelsea.

The makeshift central defender insists his side will give their all

in the final five league games, but admits playing at Wembley is

the top priority. He said: “We don’t really think about picking up

injuries. Those things happen in football. We just want to play and

win games. “But now that we know we are no longer in the league, it

should be the cup that matters most. “We have to give respect to

the league, play a strong team and give it our all. But, to be

fair, the most important thing is the cup.”