COUP DE GRACE: Cech wants Di Matteo to play Torres and Drogba to effectively end Newcastle's Champions League ambitions
LONDON: CHELSEA goalkeeper Petr Cech believes Roberto Di Matteo should play both Fernando Torres and Didier Drogba against Newcastle tomorrow in a bid to blow their rivals out of the race for a top four finish.
Blues interim boss Di Matteo has rotated between Torres and Drogba as the focal point of his attack with impressive results in recent weeks.
However, Cech would like to see the in-form duo unleashed when Newcastle visit Stamford Bridge for a crucial Premier League clash.
After enduring a miserable 15 months with Chelsea, Torres has suddenly sparked into life.
He scored a vital late goal in last week's Champions League semi-final win against Barcelona followed by a hat-trick -- his first since September 2009 -- in Sunday's 6-1 demolition of QPR.
Torres's resurgence has come at the same time as Drogba's most vibrant period of the season and between them the forwards have scored six goals in Chelsea's last five matches.
With Chelsea desperate for a victory on Wednesday as they try to leapfrog the fifth placed Magpies and fourth placed Tottenham in the battle for Champions League qualification, Cech said: "I don't know whether it would be done, but I'd start both.
"I believe it is possible. I am sure one day it will happen and there will be goals."
Di Matteo may take a more conservative view however as he has yet to start the pair together.
The Italian would have to tinker with his preferred 4-2-3-1 formation to use both and is likely to want to keep one of his senior forwards fresh for Saturday's FA Cup final against Liverpool.
For his part, Torres is just relieved to be somewhere close to his best again, but the Spaniard would love the chance to fire his side's top four challenge and strengthen his claims to feature in the FA Cup final in the process.
"We need to win," he said. "We will be closer to reaching the top four and, of course, if we win this game, we will approach the game against Liverpool in the FA Cup final with more motivation. So, it can be a great week."
Regardless of who leads the Chelsea forward line, Cech expects Chelsea to maintain their renaissance under Di Matteo by putting Newcastle to the sword.
Alan Pardew's team are surprise contenders for a Champions League spot, but showed signs of nerves in a 4-0 defeat at Wigan on Saturday and Cech is convinced Chelsea's wealth of big-match experience will prove decisive.
"I think our greater experience will be really important on Wednesday because Newcastle are in a position they haven't been in for a long time, only once maybe, and we have been there many times," he said.
"It could be the decisive factor but they and we have everything to play for. It will be an exciting game but our experience will help."
Newcastle manager Pardew doesn't disagree with Cech and admits his side won't be favourites for a match they must take at least a point from to keep Chelsea at bay and stay in contention with Spurs.
The defeat at Wigan was a significant setback and Pardew acknowledges that the losing team on Wednesday could well be out of the race.
"Although we are a point above Chelsea, we are certainly the outsiders. But Wednesday is a key night, I think," he said.
"Tottenham have to go to Bolton and we play Chelsea and it might be just down to two after that - but then again, it might not be, so we will have to wait and see.
"I just think you have to put it into the perspective of the season we have had.
"To be, with three games to go and regardless of what fixtures they are, a point above Chelsea and level with Spurs is just outstanding.
"We would have settled for that at the start of the season, for sure." AFP