Ivanovic is facing a three-match ban for his reckless challenge on
Fernando Torres appeared galvanised after his three goals at
He said: “It probably changed the game in favour of Manchester City. We competed very well up to that point and were in the lead. I was happy to be going into half-time with that lead. We knew it would be difficult in the second half with 10 against 11.
“I watched it [the Ivanovic sending off] and I thought there was no intention from our player to hurt the opposition. It was a sliding player – he got him, and got the ball as well. Sometimes the red card is given, sometimes not, but there was no intention from our player to do any harm to the opposition.”
Though Ivanovic is likely to miss the games against Wigan, Reading and Newcastle, Di Matteo is expected to have new signings Marko Marin and Oscar available for the trip to the DW Stadium. Marin missed the Community Shield with a hamstring injury while Oscar was rested after participating in the Olympics for Brazil.
Chelsea are still battling to secure a £9million deal for Victor Moses after Dave Whelan, the Wigan chairman, confirmed on Sunday that Di Matteo was yet to return with an improved offer for the winger.
Roberto Mancini had insisted before the game that
“Are City still the team to beat? Absolutely,” he said. “They are the champions. We have to catch up 25 points from last season. They are the favourites, no doubt about it, and United will be chasing City as well.
“They’ve kept the squad together, a strong squad. I’m not sure if they’ll make more signings, but they’re a strong team.”
When asked if Chelsea were stronger than last season, Di Matteo said: “We operate as a team. [Daniel] Sturridge today had an impact. So did Ryan Bertrand. It’s not about one single player. Fernando did well today, scored an excellent goal and his movement was good too. We’ll see.
“I’m happy with the squad. If there are opportunities we’ll look at the market and see what happens.”
Sam Hutchinson, the Chelsea defender who returned from retirement late last
year, is in talks with
The 23 year-old held initial talks with Sean O’Driscoll on Sunday and could join Forest for the rest of the season. Hutchinson made two league appearances for Chelsea towards the end of the last campaign.