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Deco and Carvalho both absent for Chelsea

  • Story Highlights
  • Chelsea will be without both Deco and Ricardo Carvalho for visit to Barcelona
  • The pair are struggling to regain full fitness following recent hamstring injuries
  • Chelsea defender Juliano Belletti believes the winners will also win the trophy
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(CNN) -- Chelsea will be without midfielder Deco and defenders Ricardo Carvalho and Ashley Cole for tonight's Champions League semifinal first leg against Barcelona at the Nou Camp.

A hamstring injury has ruled Ricardo Carvalho (right) out of Chelsea's clash at the Nou Camp.

A hamstring injury has ruled Ricardo Carvalho (right) out of Chelsea's clash at the Nou Camp.

Deco and Carvalho are struggling to regain fitness following hamstring problems while Cole is suspended. Meanwhile, Joe Cole and Paulo Ferreira are both out for the season with knee ligament injuries.

Barcelona have no major injury worries and manager Pep Guardiola will line up with his attacking trio of Lionel Messi, Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto'o, after Frenchman Henry was left on the bench for Saturday's draw with Valencia --before coming on to score the late equalizing goal.

Barcelona and Chelsea have met in the knockout stage of the Champions League three times since 2000, with Barcelona winning twice, and Chelsea defender Juliano Belletti believes the two-legged tie would have been a worthy final.

Argentine Belletti -- who scored Barcelona's winning goal in the 2-1 final victory over Arsenal in 2006 -- also believes the winner of the tie will go on to win the title.

In an interview with Barca TV, Belletti -- who is unlikely to start against his former club -- also claimed that the Spanish giants were not "unstoppable".

"I think the winners will end up being champions. Barca have beaten some of the great teams of Europe, and we've beaten Juventus and Liverpool. So whoever picks up the cup will have defeated the best in Europe," said Belletti.

"I think people thought this would be the final. Obviously there are other great teams like Liverpool and Manchester United, but Barca and Chelsea are the two best teams in their leagues at the moment. It's a game worthy of the final.

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"Nobody is unstoppable. I've played in the Brazilian national side for a long time and we've never thought we were unstoppable. When I was with Barca we played great football but we weren't either. Unstoppable teams don't exist."

Meanwhile, Barcelona midfielder Seydou Keita has stressed the importance of not conceding at the Nou Camp.

In their last 11 games, Barca have kept eight clean sheets and Keita believes they need to do likewise against a Chelsea team he admits are a "great side".

"It's very important to win and not to let a goal in," Keita told PA Sport. "But the coach does a great job in preparing for matches. We see a lot of Chelsea's games and we analyze their weak points and the dangers they could pose to us," he added.

"Chelsea are an opponent we know well, they are a great side. We've seen how they play in both the Premier League and the Champions League.

"They are a difficult team, with physically very strong players, and a team who are capable of causing you problems at any time."

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