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SPECIAL SPIRIT

Jose Mourinho has praised with a special spirit at Chelsea by saying that they have made it into the semifinals of the Champions League with a severely under strength squad.

Two of the signings made by Mourinho in the January transfer window – Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah – would not be available till the rest of the campaign in this competition. This coupled with several injuries to the likes of Samuel Eto’o and Eden Hazard means that Chelsea will be tested to the limit. However, they have managed to survive one of the tests after managing to beat PSG 2-0 in the second leg of the quarter-finals.

The blues needed to win by the exact margin in order to reach the next stage of the competition. This was due to the 3-1 defeat they suffered in the first leg. Mourinho’s men now reach the seventh semi-final in 11 seasons under Roman Abramovich, but even this victory is not without its problems. Mourinho says that Chelsea are likely to be without both Eden Hazard and Branislav Ivanovic. Ivanovic is suspended for the first leg of the semi-final after receiving a yellow card in the PSG match, while Hazard was substituted with what appeared to be a calf injury.

“Anything can happen. A big opponent is waiting for us in the semi-final, but I think it doesn't matter who. They know that we are a team with a special spirit, even if we are not in the maximum of our potential. [Nemanja] Matic and [Mohamed] Salah cannot play in the Champions League and we always have somebody suspended. It was Ramires today, the next one is [Branislav] Ivanovic. We have to enjoy to play against the great opponent waiting for us," said Jose after the win, which means Chelsea have overturned a 3-1 deficit in the Champions League for the second time in two seasons.