Ancelotti seeks Chelsea advantage over title rivals
European exit could benefit Chelsea - Ancelotti
Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti says their Champions League exit may help them win the Premier League this season.
The Blues went out of Europe in the last 16 to Inter Milan and lie second in the league, a point ahead of Arsenal and a point behind Manchester United.
Chelsea's rivals are both still in the Champions League and Ancelotti said: "We are disappointed to be out of the Europe, but it could be an advantage.
"The quarter-finals use a lot of energy - not only physically but mentally."
United, who visit Bolton on Saturday, face Bayern Munich in their quarter-final contest in Europe, with the first match away in Germany on Tuesday only four days before they meet Chelsea at Old Trafford in a crucial league fixture.
I've said it a few times and maybe I could be right this time - goal difference could be important at the end of the season
Sir Alex Ferguson
Arsenal face Barcelona on Wednesday in their quarter-final first leg, sandwiched inbetween league games at Birmingham and at home to Wolves.
Ancelotti added: "Mentally, it wasn't good for us to go out of the Champions League.
"But after the [5-0] victory at Portsmouth, this moment is finished. We have to look at every game. We play Aston Villa on Saturday and then have a week to prepare for Manchester United.
"Before, we would have had a midweek game, so this could prove an advantage if we prepare well for our own games and if we play with a good high tempo.
"At this moment in the season to have one more point or one less point is not so important. Every team - Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea - needs to win their games. If you are in good condition, mental and physical, you can win.
"So it's not more important to have one more or one less point. It's important to stay fit and have optimism and confidence to win the game."
As well as facing Chelsea next weekend, United must also contest a derby match against Manchester City, as well as a home game against fourth-place contenders Tottenham, after the second leg against Bayern on 7 April.
Chelsea face Spurs as well as Liverpool in their remaining matches, while Arsenal have the easier of run-ins of the three title contenders.
However, Ferguson believes a lapse of concentration at such a crucial stage could wipe out any remaining advantage.
"On paper Arsenal have the easier run in, but only on paper," said the Scot. "At this time of the season I'm not sure that works, whether it means anything at all.
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