| Drogba during a practice session |
London: Some still dismiss Chelsea as upstarts but by becoming the seventh club to complete the double on Saturday they would take another solid step in establishing themselves as real soccer heavyweights.
Having won the Premier League title in scintillating style with an 8-0 thrashing of Wigan Athletic last week Chelsea go into the FA Cup final as overwhelming favourites to beat bottom club Portsmouth at Wembley.
Preston North End, Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal (three times), Liverpool and Manchester United (three times) are the only other clubs to have won the two biggest domestic honours in the same season in England.
Even Liverpool fans, whose double came 24 years ago and last league title four years later, might then have to ditch the youve got no history chant they throw at the Londoners.
Chelsea are also bidding to become the sixth club to retain the trophy following their victory over Everton last season while Portsmouth can make their own special mark by becoming the first relegated club to win the Cup — four others have reached the final, most recently Middlesbrough in 1997.
Although they had won domestic and European honours in days gone by, it is only since Roman Abramovichs 2003 takeover that Chelsea have consistently gone toe to toe with the big boys.
Three Premier League titles, two FA Cups, two League Cups and a host of Champions League near-misses have come under Abramovich — albeit via various managers — and now another satisfying and all-too-rare achievement is there for the taking.
Doing the double would also mark a terrific first season in English football for manager Carlo Ancelotti, whose Champions League failure can be put on the back burner while everyone enjoys another big day out.If we were to do the double it would be a fantastic first season, said Ancelotti, who said he had really enjoyed the atmosphere at English grounds and is in for a treat at Wembley.
Since Portsmouths arrival in the Premier League seven years ago Chelsea have won 13 and drawn one of their 14 meetings and the last was a 5-0 thrashing at Fratton Park in March.
Another landmark is in sight on Saturday as Chelsea fullback Ashley Cole can become the first player to win the Cup six times having triumphed three times with Arsenal and twice with Chelsea. The only two other players to have collected five winners medals did so in the 19th century.