Gary Cahill was treated in hospital for a small kidney stone and is a major doubt for Chelsea's FA Cup semi-final, boss Antonio Conte has said, but captain John Terry is unlikely to replace him. We are talking about the team that, in the last five years, have won European competitions, World Cups, and a manager who won the title in Italy.
Tomorrow's clash at Wembley creates a diversion from the duo's Premier League title race, which has burst to life after Tottenham sliced Chelsea's lead to four points with six games remaining.
The cracks that have appeared in Chelsea's facade could open wider should they succumb to a rampant Tottenham side who have won seven successive league games.
It's possible Chelsea wanted the cover Ake provided as Cahill and David Luiz racked up the minutes, but for a team only competing on the League and FA Cup fronts, there is no fixture congestion to navigate. "It will be a top-quality match to watch and you have to play top quality to win". First, you have to be there to challenge, and we have that opportunity. "That's our focus, to win and then get back to the League".
On Sunday, Arsenal plays Manchester City and the F.A. Cup represents Pep Guardiola's chance to win his first trophy in English soccer.
A late collapse last season meant they finished third despite being the only club to push Leicester City for the title, and they are poised to improve on that.
But taking centre stage is an FA Cup semi final lineup featuring four of the Premier League's other big hitters at Wembley.
If Chelsea are to beat Tottenham, Conte can not afford to gamble. He has bagged 16 goals from midfield and there have already been comparisons to Chelsea legend Frank Lampard.
They were desperate to get to the final, to be held at their home stadium in Turin.
It is unconfirmed whether the virus is the same one that kept Alonso out of the 2-0 defeat to Jose Mourinho's United last weekend.
Hull's only appearance, in any division, in the last 10 years came in a tied vote - defender Michael Dawson finishing neck and neck with Middlesbrough's Daniel Ayala for a place in last season's Championship XI. The back four is constructed exclusively of players from the two London clubs, who look set to do battle for the title in the closing stages of the season.