| 8.7°C Dublin

Cole believes Bridge upset on the cards

CHELSEA full-back Ashley Cole is confident Roberto Di Matteo's side can beat European champions Barcelona to qualify for next month's Champions League final.

Chelsea go into tonight's semi-final first leg at Stamford Bridge as massive underdogs to win the two-legged tie against a Barca team widely regarded as one of the greatest club teams in world football.

However, Cole has said the west Londoners will reach the final on May 19 in Munich, Germany.

"Chelsea, of course (will reach the final). Chelsea against Real Madrid, I hope," Cole said. "We know what Barcelona are about and that we have to be on our game. We're confident and feel we're good enough to progress."

Despite having never won the European Cup, Chelsea historically have a decent record against the four-time winners, having beaten them four times in 13 meetings against Barca's five wins.

"I do think that while they're not worried about us, out of the teams they've played in the Champions League and the Premier League sides they've faced, we have given them the hardest run. We're a tough team, we never give up. We fight for every ball, we're strong in tackles and hopefully that will be in the back of their minds and we can take advantage of that.

"If people like Lionel Messi don't turn up we have a great chance."

Cole added that Chelsea's elimination at the same stage three years ago, following a late goal from Andres Iniesta, remains fresh in the memory.

"You have to be concentrated -- not just for 90 minutes but for 94, 95 minutes. We know it's going to be tough playing against this kind of team.

"They have got so many world-class players that you can't take your eye off the ball."