Dunne gives Aston Villa injury scare
Thursday 08 April 2010
Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne has given his side an injury scare ahead of Saturday's FA Cup semi-final with Chelsea.
But Villa boss Martin O'Neill is still optimistic the centre-back will be fit for the Wembley showdown.
Dunne was forced to withdraw from training this morning with a sore Achilles.
The former Manchester City player has been troubled by the problem in recent weeks and Villa could ill-afford to be without his experience for the Wembley meeting with Carlo Ancelotti's side.
O'Neill confirmed: "Dunne has had a bit of a setback and he came out of training this morning.
"Richard was a bit sore. It is an injury we have to be nursing through. It has been troublesome for a while but he definitely will want to play."
Dunne has formed an effective partnership with James Collins since his £6 million move from Eastlands during the summer transfer window.
Midfielder James Milner has resumed training after being rested for the game at Bolton last week, also with an Achilles problem, and is expected to be fit.
The club's joint £12 million record signing was rested for last week's 1-0 away win over Bolton.
Milner, like Dunne, has been a hugely influential figure during the current campaign and is a strong contender to be part of Fabio Capello's World Cup plans.
Chelsea have a doubt over goalkeeper Hilario, who has been first choice during their FA Cup run, because of a groin strain and Petr Cech is on standby.
Right-back Branislav Ivanovic will have a late fitness test on his injured knee.
Michael Essien (knee), Ashley Cole (ankle), Ricardo Carvalho (ankle) and Jose Bosingwa (knee) are all sidelined
Luka Modric has insisted Tottenham will not underestimate the challenge of facing Portsmouth at Wembley in the second semi-final on Sunday.
Portsmouth have been beset by financial problems and currently lie bottom of the Premier League.
But Modric is keen for his team-mates not to take their opponents lightly.
The Croatian told the Tottenham website: "This is a very big game for us. If we win, we're in the FA Cup final and that's what we want. That would be great for everyone at the club.
"But it's not the case that we will just beat Portsmouth. We have to concentrate and play our best football to go through. We can't relax on the pitch and think that we'll win anyway, that's not the way we need to think about this game."
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp was delighted to see Aaron Lennon return to training on Tuesday following a groin injury which has kept him out since the turn of the year.
Redknapp said: "It was great to see him out training but we've got to take our time, it's important he doesn't break down and have another setback.
"We'll see how he goes this week, the physios will monitor his progress and they will let us know when he's ready to come back and start playing again. He's getting closer and that's good news."
Portsmouth have also received good news on the injury front as Nadir Belhadj, Kevin-Prince Boateng and Papa Bouba Diop are all back in training.
Belhadj (hamstring) and Diop (knee) have only missed the last three games but Boateng has not played since limping off with an ankle injury at Manchester United two months ago.
David James, who sat out the goalless draw against Blackburn with a calf strain, has returned to light training.
Hassan Yebda is due to return to training soon following an ankle injury but Marc Wilson (hamstring) and Tal Ben Haim (groin) are not back in action yet.
Hermann Hreidarsson (Achilles), Danny Webber (knee), Anthony Vanden Borre (suspended) and Jamie O'Hara will all definitely miss the semi-final.
Hayden Mullins damaged his hand against Blackburn but is expected to face Tottenham.
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