Anton up for Chelsea - Gabbidon

BY foxsports • January 18, 2012

Rangers set up a mouth-watering tie FA Cup fourth-round tie with their west London rivals on Monday night by defeating MK Dons 1-0 in their third-round replay, Gabbidon's second-half header proving decisive.

The Hoops won the Premier League clash against Chelsea at Loftus Road earlier this season - a match also remembered for allegations that Blues captain Terry aimed racial abuse at Ferdinand. Terry has always denied the allegations.

QPR manager Mark Hughes will check with Ferdinand before deciding whether to play him on January 28, although Gabbidon believes his fellow defender will be keen to feature.

"Of course he will want to play," the 32-year-old Welshman said. "He loves his football and wants to play in every game.

"He will want to go out and show what he can do.

"When he played against them the last time he was one of the best players on the pitch as we beat them 1-0 and he will want to show that again.

"There is going to be a lot of talk about what happened leading up to the game and it is maybe going to be a little more difficult for him than the rest of us.

"It will be different for Anton because he is the one involved in it but, hopefully, he will have his head on his game and perform well.

"He has the character to do that and is an experienced player.

"It can be tough at times when everyone is talking about it and your family is getting threats from people.

"It's not nice but he is a very level-headed guy and will want to let his football do the talking."

Ferdinand had to be on his toes on Monday night alongside Gabbidon to keep dangerous-looking MK Dons at bay.

The former Sunderland defender looked sturdy in defence as the Rs kept a clean sheet, although Gabbidon believes the Terry furore originally had a negative impact on his performances.

"When it first happened, the first few games after that he wasn't himself but he realises now he's come back and he will want to put in a good performance," he added.

"We didn't talk about it too much [after it happened].

"You try to get on with things as quickly as possible and you don't want to keep bringing it up too much to him.

"We were all upset for him but we tried to move on quickly."

Monday night's result was harsh on the Dons, whose performance belied that of an npower League One side.

Charlie MacDonald and Jabo Ibehre looked dangerous throughout for the Dons, while on-loan Adam Smith and Stephen Gleeson also impressed.

Captain Dean Lewington was another that shone in west London and was disappointed with the result.

"I have a little mix of emotions after that really," he said.

"We are pleased with how we played for the majority of the game but obviously we're disappointed we lost it via a set-piece.

"We had a couple of chances and they had a couple of chances too.

"I thought it was quite a fair game and another night we may have nicked a draw and taken it to extra time.

"I am just disappointed with the fact we didn't take our chances."

While frustrated to exit the FA Cup, Lewington did mange to remain philosophical.

"It is pleasing to do well against a Premier League team and we should never forget that," he added.

"They won the Championship last year with that team quite convincingly so we're obviously delighted to have competed against them so well in two games, not just one.

"Sometimes in the replay you can come away from home and get beaten by four or five, but we put in another good performance again.

"On another night, we may have got something out of it."


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