Villa and Chelsea in semis

LONDON - Holders Chelsea advanced to the semi-finals of the FA Cup with a 2-0 home win over Stoke City while Aston Villa joined them after coming from 2-0 down to win 4-2 at Reading with a John Carew hat-trick yesterday.

The two winners will meet in the Wembley semi-finals on April 10 and 11 when Portsmouth, who beat Birmingham City 2-0 on Saturday, will play either Fulham or Tottenham Hotspur, who drew 0-0 at Craven Cottage.

Stoke, seeking their first semi-final since 1972, went close after 15 minutes when Hilario punched a Rory Delap long throw straight to Dean Whitehead, whose shot was cleared off the line by Jon Obi Mikel.

But Chelsea soon took control of the game .

Stoke defender Andy Wilkinson cleared two goal-bound efforts as Chelsea cranked up the pressure in the second half but he could only deflect John Terry's firm header from a corner that made it 2-0. - Reuters

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