RDM wanted Moses 'years ago'

BY foxsports • September 24, 2012

Roberto Di Matteo says he wanted Victor Moses "years ago" as the 21-year-old prepares for his full Chelsea debut on Tuesday.

After adding Oscar and Eden Hazard to his ranks, many were surprised Di Matteo pushed ahead with a ?9million deal to sign Moses from Wigan this summer.

The Nigeria international has impressed during his brief time at Stamford Bridge with two excellent substitute performances, and he is now expected to go in to the Blues' starting line-up for Tuesday night's Capital One Cup clash against Wolves.

And had Di Matteo had his way, the former Crystal Palace player would have been playing under his command a lot sooner.

"He's young and he'll still improve and develop but he's an exciting player that I tried very hard to sign, not just this year but previously as well, years ago," said the Italian, who had spells at West Brom and MK Dons before moving to Stamford Bridge.

"He's a player I like very much and he will have a big influence in our season. He's strong at holding the ball, his dribbling ability is very good, he can go past defenders, which not many can, and he's got the pace as well.

"He's very good at making runs in behind, he's a very good player. It's good that nobody else noticed."

Di Matteo is expected to rest a number of the players who helped the Londoners to a 1-0 win over Stoke, especially as Chelsea play Arsenal next weekend.

Marko Marin, Lucas Piazon and Cesar Azpilicueta could make their first appearances for the club while Moses may be employed as a lone striker to give Fernando Torres some time off.

"I'm sure there'll be one or two that haven't had much time on the pitch who'll be playing on Tuesday," said Di Matteo, whose team have only dropped two points so far this term.

"We'll mix it up. There are a few players who have played one or two games before that deserve a chance and there will be some senior players too."

It is unclear whether John Terry will be involved in the third-round clash at Stamford Bridge.

Terry, who started Saturday's game on the bench, retired from international football on the eve of an FA hearing in which he has been charged with using racist language towards Anton Ferdinand.

Terry, who was found not guilty of racially abusing Ferdinand in a court case in July, has vowed to clear his name again, but it is not known how long the FA hearing will last.

Should the 31-year-old be rested, Branislav Ivanovic could move to centre-back to give one of either David Luiz or Gary Cahill the night off.

That would leave Azpilicueta free to make his debut at right-back. The 23-year-old has had to wait patiently for his debut since completing a ?6.5million move from Marseille.

Ivanovic made the right-back position his own last season, but he is not concerned by the Spaniard's arrival.

"It's great to have competition between the players, it's very positive," the Serb said

"Cesar is good, he is working very hard and he is waiting for the chance and he will show his qualities and how good he is.

"One player cannot play in one position all season long."

Ivanovic spent the whole of his career as a centre half before being used invariably at right back by a succession of managers at the London club.

With Terry, Luiz and Cahill ahead of him in the pecking order, the 28-year-old appears to have little chance of a permanent place at the heart of Chelsea's defence, but he insists he is happy to play wide.

He added: "It's a different challenge playing right back and centre back. I've played for two months at right back and I'm happy."