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Name Frank Lampard
Gender Male
Nationality UK
Ethnic English
Job English Footballer
  Derby County manager
Desc A midfielder with the goalscoring record of an elite-level striker. Chelsea’s all-time leading scorer, he hit 22 in a single season in 2009/10, netting a grand total of 147 Premier League goals. Incredibly versatile, deployed everywhere across the midfield in Chelsea blue, before enjoying an unexpectedly profitable Indian Summer at Manchester City


Org English National Team
Club as Coach Chelsea FC
  Derby County
Club as Player New York City FC
  Manchester City
  Chelsea FC
  West Ham
Coach Jose Mourinho


Daughter Isla Lampard
  Luna Lampard
Assistant coach Jody Morris

2009 10 04 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard on Steven Gerrard] I would say he is the hardest player to play against in midfield because he’s got everything. He is a very complete midfield player. He’s the stand-out one in England. Maybe when we play Arsenal and they are sometimes on top form, you could pick one of their players but Gerrard is the main one for me. Stevie is one of the best players in the England team and probably in the world to be honest, so it’s always nice to play with great players and against them as well

2015 05 23 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard on Avram Grant] Less than a week after Mum died, Chelsea had the second leg of a Champions League semi-final against Liverpool. The night before the game, Avram Grant, our manager, came to my room and said he didn’t want to select me. I begged him to let me play. Steve Clarke, one of Avram’s assistants, spoke to him and pushed for me, and I played and scored a penalty in extra-time in our victory. Football was such a big part of my life that it was a thing I could cling to in the aftermath of Mum’s death. Football was all I knew to take my mind off it. To take that away was something I didn’t want to handle. I played that game in a bit of a zombie state. I don’t remember much about the game. I remember the penalty. Maybe I shouldn’t have taken it, but I felt like I had to

2015 10 31 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard after receiving his OBE award from the Duke of Cambridge at Buckingham Palace] As a personal achievement goes, this ranks up there with my achievements on the pitch and what I won with Chelsea, and playing for my country. But to receive an award like this among some very special people here, military, people who are doing a lot of good work in charity, it’s very humbling to be here

2015 11 28 Retrieve

[on Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira] I was young when I played Patrick Vieira and Roy Keane, and they bossed me. I remember I was a young boy, Patrick kept knocking it over my head [. . .], he had those really long legs, and I really admired them coming through

2016 02 12 Retrieve

[On Gianfranco Zola] If you want me to name just one who really inspired and helped me then it would be Gianfranco Zola. I came to Chelsea as quite a shy boy and it was for a big fee [. . .]. Zola took me under his wing. He was 35 and established as a world-class player, and I was fascinated by the way he trained, practised his free-kicks daily and was always the last on the training ground. He was a gentleman off the pitch and I thought that was how I’d like to be if I could ever get anywhere near what he’s done in the game

2016 02 13 Retrieve

[on Jose Mourinho] For me, Jose was the best. He was the first manager I came across to have a particular way. He knew whether a player needed a leg-up or a rollocking. He formed a spirit among the team that was formidable. We didn’t have a group mentality to win the league but he brought that in. And we have seen the same thing happening for him at Inter Milan and with his Real Madrid team

2016 02 14 Retrieve

[on Jose Mourinho] He made me believe I was better than I was at the time. I thought I was a decent player, but he said to me ‘listen, you can really get to the top’ and he made me believe it. I tried to take it on and do it. Mourinho was the best. For me he was. He brought my confidence to a level it had never been

2016 02 15 Retrieve

[When asked what makes Mourinho so good] It’s a presence and an aura and a way with people. He galvanises people. His own self-confidence reflects back on his teams. He did that to me personally. Tactically he’s fantastic. He’s very astute. As a team he sets you up brilliantly. But what he does is he gets the best out of players and gets this togetherness that I’d never known until he came to the club and I haven’t seen it again since then. He might rub people up the wrong way. [But] as a manager, he’s brilliant with his team, tactically, he’s brilliant with individuals and I think he’s brilliant with the press. I know it creates a storm, but he does protect his players.

2016 02 16 Retrieve

[on Jose Mourinho] As soon as I hit a bad time, he rang me every day. Every single day. He is the most loyal, the most caring manager I have ever worked with

2016 02 18 Retrieve

[Quotes on Paul Gascoigne] When I was a kid, Paul Gascoigne was my hero. [. . .] I remember when I started watching football, I was a young West Ham fan, and Paul Gascoigne had come and played against West Ham for Newcastle, and he was young at the time, and I was mesmerized by his character and his ability on the ball. [. . .] He was the one I always looked up to and wanted to be

2016 02 19 Retrieve

[on Rio Ferdinand] I played with Rio for the first two or three years of my career. I saw he come through as a young boy – he started as a No 10 and moved himself back to centre-half. He practised heading – heading maybe 50 balls after training when he was 17 to improve his game. To then see him at Manchester United as an absolute world-beater was amazing because I knew how much it meant to him. He was top class

2016 02 20 Retrieve

[Quote on Ashley Cole] An absolutely outstanding player and bloke. He always had time for everyone at the training ground. Two games stick out for me: one was against Ronaldo for England – Ash didn’t give him a kick – and against Barcelona in the semi-finals of the Champions League when we got to the final. In the first leg particularly, no one could get past Ash and he should be very proud of what he achieved as a left-back

2016 03 05 Retrieve

[New York City FC midfielder Frank Lampard on rivalry with New York Red Bulls ahead of MLS 2016 opening] (Last year) They were just better than us. This year’s going to be different!

2016 10 29 Retrieve

[New York City FC’s midfielder Frank Lampard’s daughters, Isla and Luna, talk about what it is like having a professional footballer as a father] There are pros and cons. The pros are that you get to go on the pitch and do lots of different things. Sometimes at school people come up to you and say, ‘Oh my gosh, your dad’s Frank Lampard!’ The cons are sometimes they only like you because of your dad. It’s pretty annoying that he’s important. Sometimes you get a big head!

2016 12 24 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is confident his old club can push on and win the English Premier League title] As a Chelsea man it is great to see, all credit to everybody there. Nobody would have fancied them to be anywhere near winning the league at that point and now they look the dominant team. I don’t like to tempt fate, but I can’t see anyone who has got the consistency to close the gap, so I fancy Chelsea strongly now

2017 01 28 Retrieve

[Jamie Carragher interviews Frank Lamprd and asks him who’s his toughest opponent and Lampard replies] Steven Gerrard, domestically. He had everything. He’d deal with you defensively and hurt you going forward. In Europe it was Andres Iniesta and Xavi. As a combination, you couldn’t get the ball off them

2017 01 29 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard speaks with Jamie Carragher in the Daily Mail] When I look back, I didn’t enjoy any of the big games. I didn’t enjoy any of the finals. You enjoy lifting the trophy and the celebrations. But it was always the next game. I had a fear of losing, a fear of what might happen if I had a bad game. Would I get dropped? Will Liverpool and Manchester United be better than us next year? I don’t remember a lot of stuff in my career

2017 02 04 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard announces his retirement] After 21 incredible years, I have decided that now is the right time to finish my career as a professional footballer. Whilst I have received a number of exciting offers to continue playing at home and abroad, at 38 I feel now is the time to begin the next chapter in my life

2017 03 07 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard on Steven Gerrard on Monday Night football] Steven Gerrard, in the Premier League. He had everything. If you got him on his day, you can almost forget about it because he was so powerful. Particularly when you used to go up to Anfield, you knew whether Stevie was on his game in the first three minutes because he’d crash through someone. But he had everything… other than the aggressive side, obviously he had top ability. He was a great midfield player.

2017 03 08 Retrieve

[Quotes on John Terry] [. . .] in my opinion the best centre-half in world football for a long time. I think you could’ve taken John for granted, having someone that good behind you, and he’d often play on the left side directly behind me. I can remember on one hand the number of times he was caught out for pace. He’s technically brilliant and I know John worked at that

2017 03 09 Retrieve

[Quotes on Didier Drogba] He is a magnificent player. He’s a machine. He’s unique. He is not just that big man. He is such a handful. He scores goals that matter and that’s priceless. There is no-one like Didier as a player, not with the kind of bulldozer thing he has got and with his sublime touch and finish

2017 03 10 Retrieve

[Quotes on Didier Drogba] He was probably the greatest player I ever played with. He scored goals in the big games, was great in the dressing room, a big character. I have a huge amount of respect for Didier

2017 03 11 Retrieve

[Quotes on Didier Drogba] It’s been a pleasure to play with him [. . .]. His body is a machine, when you look at him stripped down. [. . .] As a man, I love Didier and [. . .] he has been a hero for this club and will go down as a legend

2017 03 12 Retrieve

[Quotes on Didier Drogba] I could talk about Didier all day. You can’t underestimate the influence he had in the dressing room. The year we won the Champions League he was like a man possessed. I owe and have a lot to thank him for, because a lot of my goals and assists were down to him. The Champions League final, we wouldn’t have been stood there without Didi. To be able to score that header and then to go and score the winning penalty for the team was amazing

2017 08 26 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard expects an English club to compete for the UEFA Champions League 2017/18 title] I expect the English teams to have one or two in the semi-final. Definitely, it is time to see an English club compete. There are no excuses for me. Christmas, having no break? Physical league? Not good enough. We invest enough in football, we are lucky to have a huge investment in the league because it is so popular. Clubs have brought in players from all over the world, even lesser clubs. If you get beaten in the Champions League, then that’s because you have been beaten by a better team. It is as simple as that. Unfortunately, for the English teams, the real best teams have been a Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich for a time

2017 10 21 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard reflects on his career, and winning the UEFA Champions League in 2012] I like to see myself as a winner and you often look back and regret the trophies you lost as much as celebrate the ones you won. I would have been gutted to get to the end of the career without the Champions League

2017 11 27 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard reveals the much spoken about ‘golden generation’ of English football did not achieve success in proportion to their quality because fail to replicate the intensity of club performances at international level] You feel so passionately about the club, your own performances, that to be a bit pally with someone you’re competitive with was difficult. It may have held England back. We didn’t hate each other, but by nature we would sit on different tables

2018 03 15 Retrieve

[Lampard explains how he fell in love with Serie A] In the modern day with social media, everything’s in touching distance - you can watch Spanish [football], watch Italian [football], these names are in everyday view. Then it was our league at home and there was this magical league [over there]

[Lampard name AC Milan as his favourite team] I got an AC Milan kit as a Christmas present one year - a special present just after dinner. When I pulled out that kit I must have worn it for three days

[Lampard explains how Serie A influenced him in the early stages of his career at West Ham and Chelsea] Gianfranco Zola was another hero of mine. He kind of goes under the radar because he wasn’t at an A1 team there - Napoli and Parma. When I played with him he was 37 and the technique on him and his professionalism, which is something I think the Italians brought into our game - they were 15-20 years ahead of us in that era

You could just see in the definition of them, whereas if you looked at the old Division One in England there would have been ‘different’ body shapes! There they had seen nutrition, fitness coaches. Paolo Di Canio was like that and you could look up to that and be influenced by it

2018 08 04 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard tells that he and former England team-mate and now Rangers manager Steven Gerrard texted each other before making their managerial debuts] We were texting back and forth discussing the mad life of management and how we both see it. We are both the same, we are enjoying every minute of it. It’s strange and you can’t switch off because you want to do so well, that’s certainly how I feel. Some days you can’t switch off which means giving it every moment of the day and I’m sure Steven will be the same because I know how competitive he is

2018 11 22 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard on Didier Drogba’s retirement] Didier Drogba is the most incredible player. He always turned up on the big occasion. He was a monster in the dressing room. He should be so proud of his career. On top of that, he is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, men I have played with

2019 05 10 Retrieve

[Espionage scandal against Frank Lampard’s Derby] You know that it’s a crime to spy. Do you know that? Do you know it was a crime? When you have a level of ignorance and you work as a journalist and when you have a right to ask questions and when you lie in your answers and you don’t assume the irony and you keep telling what you ignore if spying is a crime or not you deserve a response without any conclusion. You make your question knowing that observing the opponent is now sanctioned, you know it perfectly and you ask… Is it a joke? If it was I don’t understand it. But it’s not because I don’t have a sense of humour. You’re not funny. If we are to explain these circumstances, what we can say is this team deserves to have 10-12 points more and we don’t have them because we needed too many chances to actually score one goal. This is the vision I have through the whole season

2019 07 22 Retrieve

[Chelsea youngster Ethan Ampadu has joined Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig on a season-long loan deal] I tried to sign Ethan on loan at Derby last year so I’m a big fan, but with the minutes he played last year, in the interest of Ethan and of Chelsea, the idea he can play a lot of games somewhere could be good for him. I really wanted to work with Ethan this year. That’s a slight disappointment, but it’s to benefit of him. In midfield and defence, we have a lot of quality, so each player is a case by case

2019 07 23 Retrieve

[Kurt Zouma is expecting to remain at Chelsea after being given assurances over his future] I want him here, simple as that. I want him to be happy. If he competes and plays well this season, he plays

2019 07 23b Retrieve

[Barcelona vs Chelsea. When asked about Christian Pulisic’s performance after his first defeat as Chelsea manager against Kawasaki Frontale] Good. He has only been here a couple of days really in terms of training, so I have been really impressed. He’s comfortable on the ball and I think he should have had a penalty towards the end of the game. He wants to try to take people on - the sort of player the fans are going to like - so we have to give him a little bit of time to adapt slightly. But the way he has trained, and the way he has come in with his personality looks great, so I am really pleased to have him

2019 07 23c Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says N’Golo Kante’s recovery from injury is progressing well and hopes the midfielder will be back with the squad soon] He is okay. It was a decision that I made because I felt that him being here, with the facilities and the travel that we have been doing, it probably wasn’t the most beneficial for him. He went back, has had a few days at Cobham, [he’s] working well and progressing, so hopefully by the time that we get back at the end of the week I will sit down with the doctor to hopefully know that he will be back with us very soon

[Tammy Abraham and Ross Barkley were on target against Barca in Saitama] I won’t get carried away with anything about this performance. Tammy’s a goalscorer and he’s hungry for goals. Now it’s his time to prove it for Chelsea. To get his goal will put him in good stead

[Lampard says he has been impressed with his side’s worth ethic during their pre-season campaign] In terms of the workload, the players have to get used to it now. I’ve set the standard of how I want them to work. We’ve had two difficult games in humidity. The tour has served its purpose. We need to be fit and ready for Manchester United and the clock runs down pretty quickly at this stage. Now, we just have to keep working

: 2019 07 25 New Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is facing a dilemma over the number of non-homegrown players in his squad as the new season closes in at Stamford Bridge. UEFA rules state clubs in the Champions League may register no more than 17 foreign players in their squads for the competition, with a further eight spots available for homegrown players. The arrival of January signing Christian Pulisic and the decision to retain Mateo Kovacic on a permanent deal following his loan spell has left Lampard with a surplus of foreign players

: 2019 07 25b Frank Lampard’s decision to use academy graduate Reece James in his first-team plans next season could spell the end for Davide Zappacosta, who may find himself as the third-choice right-back

: 2019 07 25c Kurt Zouma, is a target for Everton following an impressive loan spell at Goodison Park last season, but Lampard is keen to keep the France international following the release of Gary Cahill.

2019 07 28 Retrieve

[Reading vs Chelsea. Reflecting on disappointing 1-1 draw against Bohemians and a 1-0 loss to Kawasaki Frontale contrasted against a fine 2-1 victory over Barcelona in Japan earlier this week] I’m very happy. It’s been good on the pitch and off the pitch. There is more work to do but it’s been a good trip. What I’ve learnt about the players is they’re a strong group. They’ve done everything asked of them and more. We’ve had two very competitive games in humidity and difficult conditions. It’s a good test for the players and the tour has helped us

2019 07 28b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Callum Hudson-Odoi is very close to renewing his contract as Willian remains locked in discussions over prolonging his stay at Chelsea] I think agreed would mean signed so we’re not quite there but what’s very clear is the club are working towards that. Talks moved on very well in the last week or two but it’s not done yet. The one thing that’s clear to me is I want to keep him here. He’s a player we cherish. Players who come through the academy are the present and the future of the club so we’re doing everything we can to get there. I hope it’s news to be confirmed soon

[Lampard was less assured on Willian’s future, but expressed his desire to keep the 30-year-old at the club] I know the club are talking to Willian. They’re both players I want in my squad. We’ve made good moves in pre-season. Mason Mount and [Ruben] Loftus-Cheek signed new contracts, that’s two good young players nailed down. We’re always trying to do that. From a football sense, I make my ideas clear and work very closely with [Chelsea director] Marina Granovskaia and the board and they’re two players we want to stay for sure

[Lampard says that the 18-year-old Hudson-Odoi is back on the training pitch at Cobham Training Centre, although he isn’t taking part in full first-team sessions with the squad] He’s not training with us yet but the injury is coming on well. He is ahead of schedule. I get scared of saying [it] but from the first diagnosis he’s ahead of schedule. But there will be a period for Callum where his injury is fine and then he needs to get fit to play in this team because it will be demanding with the way I want to play, from front to back. He’s not far away and I know he’s done everything he can to be fit through the summer and the medical team have been very good. We’re getting close

[Lampard is hoping to have N’Golo Kante back in time to face Manchester United in two weeks] I am hopeful he will be ready. He’s dipped into training with us in the last couple of days. There’s still a lot more he needs to do physically without us, that he can do without contact, which has been good. But the signs are good in the last three days since we’ve been back. It was certainly the right decision for him to come back and get the treatment he had. I would expect him to be training through the week with us to the point where at the start of next week he is fully training

2019 07 28c Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says he doesn’t want to hear offensive songs sung by the club’s fan base after their pre-season friendly with Reading was marred by derogatory chants from the stands] The support for the fans was incredible. I didn’t hear the song in question, and of course if there’s a song in the modern day or any day that has offensive words I don’t want to hear that. That’s me saying that as a big Chelsea man who really appreciates the support and had it over the years. We don’t want songs with offensive words. If the fans could sing other songs then I’ll back that. We don’t want to hear that. The club are very clear with the work we do off the pitch about anything that’s offensive or prejudiced and we’ve made a big mark on that in modern years. We don’t want that

2019 08 01 Retrieve

[Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard was delighted with Christian Pulisic’s performance after he starred in a 5-3 friendly win over Salzburg on Wednesday] I was very impressed with the way that he took the goals. As a winger in the Premier League, he has to adapt to that league. He is young but with huge potential and I am happy for him

[Lampard acknowledged his side’s defensive play was a concern less than a fortnight away from Chelsea’s first Premier League match of the season] We want to concede zero goals, so it is a concern and we want to improve on it. We will talk about it. We can’t afford to make those mistakes

2019 08 09 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has rejected any suggestion that David Luiz went on strike prior to completing a deadline-day move to Arsenal] We had some conversations over the last week, honest ones, and the conclusion was that he should move on. It’s a position that I have a lot of competition. Everyone has to understand that. He has moved on and we wish him the absolute best, because he has been a big part of our history. There wasn’t any strike. No fall-outs, just honest conversations. As a player I want that as a manager, and I think I got that from David. Him not training was a decision I made as I felt that was best at the time

I don’t expect there to be. We will see over the next few weeks

[He added on being forced to watch on as rivals scrambled around to get bodies on board before the deadline] With the ban it has been easy to write off this squad, and I don’t write off this squad at all. I think that what is important is that you have a target within the group. What matters is how we approach things. We will see how we go. Manchester City and Liverpool showed there was a gap, everyone has to make it up. We will aim to win and of course we want to be in the Champions League every year. We are realistic and we just have to work our hardest. Yes, [it is bridgeable] because this is football. One of the beauties is that you start again fresh

2019 08 09b Retrieve

[Lampard says criticism of Solskjaer has been harsh] I am aware of it and it comes with the territory. It can be excessive, for everyone in football. I think it is possibly harsh as it is something that he came in to. You have to look at him this season and what he gets to do. I don’t listen too much to things

I love hearing predictions when we’re not in the top four and there isn’t anything better than proving people wrong. I love playing at Old Trafford. It is a big game for both teams. We are both huge clubs that have had a lot of success. We both have the same idea that we want to be successful. We want to be competing

[Chelsea finished 26 and 25 points off top two Manchester City and Liverpool respectively last season, but Lampard is aiming high ahead of his first campaign as a Premier League boss] Manchester City and Liverpool showed there was a gap, everyone has to make it up. We will aim to win and of course we want to be in the Champions League every year. We are realistic and we just have to work our hardest. The gap [is bridgeable] because this is football. One of the beauties is that you start again fresh

2019 08 09c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says that the shock £8 million sale of David Luiz to Arsenal wasn’t down to player power and that he didn’t flex his muscles] I would never have gone out to make any form of a mark. I think it would have been naive to try to flex my muscles or my power. I don’t need to do that. I just play it as I see it, daily. I watch how the players train, I watch how the players react in the dressing room, how the spirit is. And then I have to make decisions. And I have to try and create a squad that is in the image of what I want. And I wasn’t saying David wasn’t part of that, but I have to make lots of decisions every day and they are not all about trying to show power, they are just trying to do it my way because the last thing I want to do is look back on these times and go, ‘I wish I had done that differently and I didn’t quite do it’. These are decisions that I make daily. So, if it looks like that from the outside, it certainly wasn’t how I did it. It was purely football decisions on both sides. Not just the way I was thinking, but the way David was thinking. And at 32, I was that 32-year-old. I left here at 35-ish.

It was slightly different, for me, but I wanted honesty and respect. It went both ways. We are also big characters, so when we do talk, then it is serious. We don’t beat around the bush, we got to the point pretty quickly and that was it. We have four centre-halves. Three full internationals, one is an under-21 international who I worked with last year. We have other players in defensive areas. It is an area of the pitch where I am very interested to see players stand up and play. To make that shirt their own as everyone has to in every position. I am very comfortable with the squad we have got and that’s not a slant on David at all. I know all of David’s qualities. He has got great qualities as a footballer and as a person. It is just a decision we came to.

[Lampard has dismissed claims that Luiz wanted to be untouchable] I’m never surprised by players. He didn’t want to be untouchable, and I should make that clear. I’m never surprised by players. The huge difference between being a player and a manager is that, as a player, you can be very selfish and not worry about anyone else too much. When you are a manager, your responsibility is 25 players and more, everyone around the building. So never expect a conversation to go the way you think it might go. Also, when you are dealing with top-level sportspeople, they are driven and I accept that. We are all driven in different ways. I used to hate being subbed, I used to hate being dropped. I was terrible. I wouldn’t want to manage myself in certain ways! But as a manager, you have to understand that you have to have these conversations and so I’m never surprised by what any player does, they just try to get the best out of the situations for the club you are working for

[Lampard met Solksjaer for the first time on Wednesday at a Premier League managers’ meeting and gave his verdict on his rival] Well, I enjoyed watching Ole. First of all, he seems like a very likeable man, I met him in the week at the manager’s meeting and he carried on that way. We played against each other but we wouldn’t have had too many social moments. I like to see someone who is obviously a legend at the club but also a people person. I like that. Even though I’m not at Manchester United, I like seeing the uplift he got as a manager when he went in. And he did. I watched their performances in Paris and others where they were fantastic. It was nice to see as a young manager, a young aspiring manager myself, for someone to come in and do as well as he has done. Now it’s a big test. The expectations don’t go anywhere for any of us, they are probably higher for us and that’s what we have to work with all of the time

2019 08 10 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has given Christian Pulisic a vote of confidence as the winger looks set to make his Chelsea debut against Manchester United on Sunday] He has good ability, can beat a man, nice touch. He scored a couple of good goals in pre-season when he ran in behind defences, which is what I really want from my wingers or attacking players. We also have to give it time because of his youth. Changing leagues, this is the Premier League, which is the most competitive league in the world, but there are some good signs. When I say I want to look after him, I don’t want to sound like I am talking down to him. He comes into the squad competing to play, for sure. We must be aware that there is a bit of a transitional period. Hopefully not because he hits the ground running. I think he has the quality to do that

[Some are echoing those doubts over his career as a manager] When I look back on my career, West Ham days, coming to Chelsea and England was difficult at times. That’s not just me, and it is part of a career in football. At the top where you want to be, it is tough and you have to prove people wrong. Even more in the modern day of social media where everyone has really strong opinions. Normally, you would have to break down barriers. The only way that I ever knew to try to do it was to work. It certainly feels sweater if you do prove someone wrong or get to where you want to be. I am happy with the career I had of 21 years of playing because I felt like I gave everything and I couldn’t have given much more. I am trying to do the same as a manager. I use all that stuff as motivation. I am not stupid, I understand why [we are doubted], we have a transfer ban.

There are two teams out in front from last year. The Premier League is more competitive at the top end than it has ever been so it shouldn’t be and it won’t be, ‘Oh Chelsea are clear favourites to win the league this year.’ I don’t think that’s for anybody going forward. Even for Manchester City, who are a fantastic team and Liverpool pushed them to the wire. I don’t think you can walk around with your eyes closed. You should be aware of these things. They don’t affect my thinking day-to-day. They make you determined to do the job as well you can. I don’t mind it. I like to be considered not as a favourite. In my career, there have been many moments like that and they are the sweet ones where you can believe in what you can do and you can achieve it

[United are once again going to be Chelsea’s first opponents and Lampard admits it isn’t going to be easy] We come back from Manchester and on Monday we fly to Istanbul to face Liverpool. There is not too much time to consider things. We want to hit the ground running, yes. Wouldn’t everybody? We have been given a tough start, especially when you consider the turnaround from Sunday to Wednesday with the travel. We are prepared for two hard games

2019 08 11 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard insists he has complete faith in his squad ahead of his first game in charge of the Blues] We’ve got a group here I believe a lot in. I know we have a transfer ban and a lot of the talk around us has been questioning what we can do, but I certainly believe in the squad. We know the bar has been raised by Manchester City and Liverpool last season and there is the challenge - can we close the gap? I will do my best. I’m not going to jump into the future because, as we know, this is a tough business and there are expectations everywhere. But I will certainly give all I can, that’s how I did it in my playing career, I tried to work as hard as I could get and get every ounce out of myself and I will do the same as a manager

[Yet the ex-West Ham man says his success as a player, and those he shared it with, will not influence his style of management] I don’t believe in harking back to previous eras because everything changes. For me to reel off players like Didier Drogba, John Terry and Petr Cech etc is pretty pointless. I am not setting my expectations on anything that has gone. When the players walk through the corridor, they should look at the pictures of them with trophies and be inspired without a doubt, but I don’t think you can rely on that or set a tone on that. We are a different bunch of players, I am a manager now and I want it to be my way

2019 08 11b Retrieve

[Manchester United vs Chelsea. Like Solskjaer, Frank Lampard will take a long-term approach with his team, though unlike his counterpart at Old Trafford, his philosophy has been forced due to a year-long transfer ban] I want us to train how we want to play, to replicate that, even if I don’t think you can turn the switch on and off when you play. I want energy in my team. I want us to have possession of the ball. We have players who have the quality to handle the ball, but I don’t want it for possession’s sake. I want us to be an exciting team to watch so we can move the ball through the pitch quickly and create chances

2019 08 11c Retrieve

[USMNT star Christian Pulisic makes Chelsea debut as substitute against Manchester United] He has good ability, can beat a man, nice touch. He scored a couple of good goals in pre-season when he ran in behind defenses, which is what I really want from my wingers or attacking players. We also have to give it time because of his youth. Changing leagues, this is the Premier League, which is the most competitive league in the world, but there are some good signs. When I say I want to look after him, I don’t want to sound like I am talking down to him

2019 08 11d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is adamant Manchester United’s 4-0 thrashing of Chelsea flattered the Red Devils considerably] Without a doubt. Four mistakes, four goals, let’s get that out straight away, because we have to be self-critical. Other than that, for 60 minutes we controlled the game. We controlled the first half, major parts of it, [hit the] woodwork, [played] balls across the face of goal

There were poor decisions in the final third when we should have been able to get shots away and score, at half time we should be in the lead. Again, early in the second half I didn’t mind it [being behind], but then the second and third goal, two mistakes, and it’s much easier for them to play at 3-0 up. At 1-0 we were the better team, but I can’t stand here and look happy with that because it’s 4-0. This is a counter-attacking team [United], a big strength of theirs. We know they have pace, if you turn over the ball or give them opportunities to play in behind, they will. For large parts of the game we didn’t [let them] do that, we were the ones who were bright, breaking, the last bit [in the final third] wasn’t great, but we were so comfortable in the way we were playing in the first half, so there are loads of lessons for us. You can’t make unforced errors at this level, but it’s not a result that if you just switched on and saw it was a 4-0, it was nowhere near a 4-0

2019 08 11e Retrieve

[Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard hit back at Jose Mourinho after criticism of his team selection for the 4-0 loss to Manchester United] He didn’t like the performance of Mason Mount? Is that what he said? Did he? Wow. Well, I can’t drag players out of the medical room to play if they are experienced or not, so these are the players that played in a game that we were clearly the better team for 45-60 minutes. What was evident that we made individual errors that led to four goals out of their five shots. So there’s the harsh reality for us. I don’t have to be too concerned about what anyone else says, pundit-wise or anyone, they have to speak. At the same time, what’s clear is the squad is what we’ve got and I believe in it. If we go in at half-time 2-1 or 3-1 up, as we probably should have done if we were more clinical and maybe had a stroke of luck here and there, the game would’ve been completely different

2019 08 12 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says he plans to be patient with Christian Pulisic] Christian Pulisic is 20 years old and he’s come across from Dortmund. He will be a fantastic player for the club. He has got great ability. You saw little moments with his acceleration on the ball. But I have also got other options in midfield and in those areas, and I don’t want to stick Christian straight into the fire without trying to help him along the way. It was one of those games where I felt it was better to start with Ross [Barkley] and Mason [Mount], who have been very strong in pre-season, and bring Christian on. If the game had carried on at 1-0, or we were back in the game as we should have been, he would have been a great injection. In the end it was difficult for him because the game went quickly away from us

2019 08 13 Retrieve

[N’Golo Kante has delivered an untimely injury scare for Chelsea, with Frank Lampard revealing that the midfielder is nursing another knock] Kante was purely [on the bench] because he had an injury. I am very aware of how important he is. He picked up another small injury in the game, so we are assessing that. I pick the best team to win the game, regardless of age. Mason Mount deserves his chance on merit, I won’t fear to play young players. In terms of how we set up, I really liked some of our aggressive off-the-ball work. We have to be adaptable and respect the strengths of our opponents. There may be subtle changes of our approach

[Lampard reiterated that Kante is a doubt to face Liverpool when offering an update on his other walking wounded] Kante has a small injury and I will make a decision with that with him. Willian and Rudiger are here and they are in different stages. Willian is not far from fit, to put him in a high intensity match is tough. He will be working through this week on fitness. Tomorrow he will be on the bench. Similarly with Rudiger

2019 08 13b Retrieve

[When asked to pick out the finest players he faced] Can I give you two answers? It’ll actually be three. The first one is Messi because he was the most incredible player – it was like you were playing against someone who’s not on the same level as all of us. The two players I always remember having the hardest time against were Xavi and [Andres] Iniesta at Barcelona. They just played football around you, and you didn’t get near them. It was football that wasn’t normal to me; it was different from anything else I came up against

What I certainly want to be is a team that are quite fluid and adaptable in the way that we play. I don’t want to be stuck into one idea, one vision, one plan – I want the players to be adaptable, so that as we move forward, we can evolve. It might be daily, it might be weekly; it might be with formations, it might be with mindset. I want to be very open to that, and I want my players to be open to that. Intensity is everything for me. In a daily sense, how we train will be how we play. And intensity is many things. It’s not just physical, it’s also mental; it’s how you approach every day and every game. I had those times at Chelsea when I felt that when we were on it. We were competitive with each other daily; we would shout or lift someone up if they were training at a level that wasn’t good enough – that’s when we were at our best. So it should be. If you’re doing that daily, if you’re a group together, if you’re pushing each other on, that’s what brings a successful team

[Lampard is determined to deliver success at Chelsea after returning to his spiritual home] It is a defining thing in my life, because I took Chelsea home with me the minute I joined the club. When I look back, I’m delighted at what I managed to achieve, or what we did as a group, except for that we should have won more Premier League titles. I feel for this club deeply. Hence why I want to do so well here. Of course I want to do well for myself, I want to improve myself but at the same time I want this club to be where it belongs

2019 08 13c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has welcomed the decision to appoint a female referee Stephanie Frappart for Wednesday’s UEFA Super Cup clash between Liverpool and Chelsea] I am very pleased to be a part of this moment in history, it is very much due. The game has come a long way, in many ways: in terms of the Women’s World Cup, which we all watched; in terms of how much respect the game is getting; how many people are watching it. We were very slow on this in many ways and they are now getting the interest. We are very pleased to be part of it and that we are making big strides in the development. It is a historic moment and another step in the right direction, I would say

2019 08 14 Retrieve

[Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard believes it is pretty much impossible to replace Eden Hazard with another individual] I was a huge fan of Eden Hazard as a Chelsea fan, I played with him. For me, clearly one of the best players in world football and last season, but not just last season, over his time at Chelsea he was the most productive player in the team generally, in terms of assists and goals and a leader. You cannot replace him individually, I think it’s pretty much impossible because of the high, high level he is at now in his career. But the good news and the positive news for us and we must stay calm and be patient with this [is] we have a group of players, some younger players, some experienced players, that now have the opportunity to show that collectively and individually they can step up because yes, you are missing a huge amount of assists and goals, that’s clear. The answer is as a team, we have to find a way to carry on because a football club like Chelsea will always carry on. Eden Hazard, John Terry, Didier Drogba, players improve on and it’s down to the next players, the next manager. That’s our big challenge now, to say good luck to Eden Hazard and to carry on as Chelsea.

I am optimistic because I believe in the players and I believe in the fact we are here in the final because we deserve to be. That is the achievement of the players and the club last season, not myself, but I am proud to be here managing the team. I understand the quality of Liverpool, the team that deservedly won the Champions League. They have an outstanding manager [Jurgen Klopp] and group of players and we know it is going to be a big test, but I believe in my players and if we play to our maximum we can win the match.

2019 08 14b Retrieve

[Liverpool vs Chelsea. Liverpool start Wednesday’s European Super Cup final against Chelsea as strong favourites to lift the title for a fourth time] It’s a cup that the club desperately wants to win. I’ve never won it, a lot of players in there have never won it, so we have to give it everything. Every player in there needs to be aware of the importance of the game to this club and we have to give everything, because it’s going to be tough

2019 08 15 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has offered his support to Tammy Abraham after the young striker’s penalty miss against Liverpool proved decisive on Wednesday] Tammy needs to keep his head up. That’s part and parcel of being a top player. You want to take the fifth penalty but you might miss it

They showed their personality. It was a tough, tough game against a fantastic Liverpool team. Talk about Jorginho, talk about that performance, talk about N’Golo Kante who has hardly trained, talk about Kurt Zouma, Andreas Christensen, I could go through them all, incredible. I’m really proud and I know we lost, but I’m confident for the season after that

[But the manager isn’t concerned about his side’s inability to bring in players, insisting that he’s got a strong group to work with] We’ve got a real quality bunch in here. People will talk about transfer bans and all that, but I already knew this was a really good group of players and we’re working harder as a team. We’re trying to install the way I want them to play and the way they played today had so many good things. It’s hard, but I don’t want to just focus on youth. We’re obsessed with Chelsea and youth at the moment

[One of those young players is Christian Pulisic, who impressed on his first Chelsea start with an assist and a fantastic goal that was ruled out for offside] Really pleased, let’s not forget Pulisic is 20. He goes and gets an assist and will only get better. He has to get used to teams like Liverpool and how they play. Mason Mount and Tammy gave us another dimension when they came on. Mason almost scored, so did Tammy.

2019 08 15b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has labelled himself the worst loser in the world after watching Chelsea lose to Liverpool on penalties in the UEFA Super Cup] My overall feeling is one of pride. I’m a terrible loser, one of the worst in the world, but I’m happy with the team performance because we were very unfortunate. After Sunday, tonight was another level, and we were unlucky not to win. We’ve got three games now till the international break and we’ll try to win them all. Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham added an extra dimension when they came on, and were unlucky not to score

[Abraham earlier won the penalty Jorginho converted to make it 2-2 and take the game to a shoot-out but the 21-year-old’s tame effort from 12 yards was saved by Adrian’s right leg, sparking wild Liverpool celebrations] I’ve told him not to worry. I’ve missed penalties before, anyone can miss, but what I want to see is the confidence of a young player to step up. But people keep talking about the young players at Chelsea. Let’s talk about Jorginho and N’Golo Kante, and I could name a few others. We’ve got a quality bunch in there, a really good group, and we’re working hard. I’m trying to instill the way I want to play and there were so many good things tonight

2019 08 15c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says All signs are pointing in the right direction for Christian Pulisic at Chelsea] Yeah I was pleased and there is a lot more to come. The expectancy is right, he is a big signing for us but you have to remember his age. He’s 20 and come into the league, into this game, against Liverpool, one of the most intense teams in football. It took a bit of time early in the game to get his feeling. But once he did, you could see his confidence in carrying the ball and to create. I am really happy with him. There is lots, lots more to come. Again, [he’s showing] all the good signs for what he can be for the club

[The U.S. international was replaced on 74 minutes by Mason Mount, who also saw a goal ruled out] For me I felt we were the stronger team. Maybe some bad luck and at times some bad finishing, we need to be more clinical

2019 08 16 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has condemned the disgusting racist abuse aimed at Tammy Abraham] I am disgusted by this so-called Chelsea fan. I don’t know how it’s allowed - it’s too easy. Something needs to be done, as well as obviously changing mindsets completely. I’m so angry for Tammy and angry for us as a club, because that’s not what we’re about. The club does a lot of work against discrimination at all levels and it’s a setback when these things happen. Obviously he is more than disappointed - who wouldn’t be? Tammy asked me to take the fifth penalty because he wanted to stand up on a big night when the world was watching. Moments afterwards, somebody sitting behind a keyboard or a phone has said the most disgusting things possible. He is always desperate to score and that’s one of the things I love about him. He gets in positions regularly and that’s an indication of his character that he’s not hiding

[Lampard felt his side should have won the all-English affair in Turkey] We didn’t concede so many goals. There were some really good parts in the Manchester United game. We just need to learn about the four errors from the goals. Liverpool are one of the best teams in the world and we matched them. We moved the ball and created chances. We lost on penalties, but in the game we should have won. What’s important now is the reaction and we’re looking to get our first three points. We could have done without extra time, but it is what it is. We have an extra day until Sunday and the players are doing a lot of recovery rather than training

[Lampard has ruled out an exit for Michy Batshuayi, who is behind Olivier Giroud and Abraham in the pecking order, but the futures of right-back Davide Zappacosta and midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko are less clear] Michy will stay here as one of our strikers. We have three strikers this season and there will be opportunities for him. He’s very much our player and competing with Tammy and Ollie. As for Zappacosta, that is not clear yet. He is our player and Reece James is probably out for three more weeks. That will be a decision we have to make before the European transfer window closes, similar to Bakayoko

2019 08 16b Retrieve

[Criticism of Maurizio Sarri’s handling of N’Golo Kante will not stop Frank Lampard from using the Chelsea midfielder in much the same manner. Former boss Sarri exclusively deployed Kante in a box-to-box role rather than in his more familiar place in front of the defence] It’s been a discussion that has been over-talked at times last year and that was me watching it from the outside. The important thing for me with all of our midfield is that we have a flexibility, and nobody is pinned down to an absolute structure. I think we saw elements of that against Liverpool where the players have a freedom to use their attributes. The idea that he wins the ball probably as well as anybody in world football doesn’t mean that he has to sit in front of the back four and do that. He also has it in his game to drive forward with the ball, to lead midfield areas and win the ball back high up the pitch. That’s what I want to give him the freedom to do

2019 08 16c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard was equally as complementary about Brendan Rodgers] [I’ve got a] really good relationship with Brendan. It was obvious when he was here he was going to go on to big things. He’s forward thinking, very open with his players and he’s proved that in his career. I look forward to seeing him

2019 08 16d Retrieve

[Twitter believe they have made significant progress to stopping racism on their platform] We continue to take action on any account that violates the Twitter Rules. We welcome people to freely express themselves on our service, however, as outlined in our Hateful Conduct Policy, users cannot promote violence against, threaten or harass other people on the basis of race, ethnicity or other protected groups. We remain deeply committed to improving the health of the conversation on the service and in that respect, we continue to prioritise the safety of our users

2019 08 16e Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has backed Kick It Out, the anti-discrimination football charity, in calls for Twitter to do more to protect footballers after Tammy Abraham was racially abused on their platform this week] Firstly, the person that’s writing it should have a look at themselves, and secondly, I think it should be policed. We’re asking Tammy Abraham to see that after he’s trying to help us win the Super Cup, doing his day job. He’s been doing [his job] since he was eight or nine. And he gets that [racist abuse]. It’s incredible. In my day, five out of 10 in The Sun was a bad reflection of performance. Now it’s instant. And it’s not a joke. It’s not funny when it becomes hate. That’s where we go far beyond.

I’m not just talking about Tammy’s situation. It’s far too easy to spout hate casually on these social media platforms. I agree it’s difficult for the players. This is modern life. They are on social media. All of them. I am concerned about it. To say they need to be thick-skinned is too easy to say. When it becomes you and it becomes hurtful, it’s a problem we have to deal with. It’s difficult to say don’t look at it. They’re all on social media as soon as they go on the coach.

It’s difficult from my end [to stop them going on it]. The social media companies, are they ever going to stop someone casually putting up what someone did against Tammy? That’s their responsibility. We are more aware of [it] because it is more out there, but I don’t know if its getting better or worse. It’s a really difficult one because we are trying to change attitudes and there’s a lot of paces forward but suddenly there’s paces backwards. It’s about the education of people - but when they hide behind phones, then it is very tough

[Lampard has dismissed claims that he is under pressure to deliver after losing his first two games, but he is desperate to win in his first home match in charge] What people hopefully saw in the performances, particularly on Wednesday, was a team giving everything and playing good football. There were signs of what I want, which is energy in the team. Of course, winning is the most important thing but I think if we perform as we did on Wednesday and in parts of the Manchester United game, then we are going towards where we want to go. But what I will say is I’ve not had any pressure of someone saying, ‘Why did you not win those games?’. We know that. We know we’re Chelsea and want to win every game we play. But I think the good signs on Sunday and Wednesday were overpowering. But now we must win

2019 08 16f Retrieve

[Batshuayi set for Chelsea stay but Lampard leaves exit door open for others] The future is Michy’s here as one of our strikers. It’s important for him as this year we have three strikers but there will be opportunities for him. With Michy it’s important that he trains at a top, top-level every day and gets himself fit to play the way I want my strikers to play, which will be constant movement on and off the ball for us and obviously to try and score goals. He’s very much our player and competing with particularly with Tammy [Abraham] and Oli [Giroud] for that space

[Lampard said of the 27-year-old and the potential for talented teenager Reece James to rise above him in the pecking order] Reece is injured. There will probably be another two or three weeks until he is back. That’s another decision that will be made as we go on. I have been really impressed with Zappacosta’s training, attitude and how he has been. He is a very good player. We have to make sure that we are happy with our squad when the European windows shut completely. That will be a decision for us and, of course, Zappa. I want players happy. The professionalism that he has shown here has been great. That’s an ongoing conversation, but he is our player

[Bakayoko, who is back with Chelsea after a loan spell at AC Milan but still out of favour, is another who could depart over the coming weeks] Yes, it is similar with both players [Bakayoko and Zappacosta]. They obviously haven’t both started this season for us or had minutes. Both have shown great application and not been a problem. The decision will be what’s best for us as a club and them individually

2019 08 17 Retrieve

[Lampard: Performances and results will define how long I am at Chelsea] Performances and results will define how long I am here. It is very easy to be negative after losing 4-0 but there were a lot of good signs during the game against Manchester United. As for the performance against Liverpool, I think we were the better team against one of the best teams in the world and probably deserved to win on general play. This is something we should be proud of. We need to use that. Hopefully, it will give us confidence about what’s ahead. What I have felt in the six weeks that I have been here is that the players are a good group and they have a lot of spirit. We saw that against Liverpool in the dressing room and on the pitch. That is what you want to see as a manager because it gives you the chance to work

Things surprise you in football management every day but the situation has been exactly what I expected. I knew about the transfer ban, I knew Eden Hazard had left the club, I knew we were losing two strikers in Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain and I knew we couldn’t buy anyone. I knew we had five or six major injuries. I knew all that but the last thing I want to be is negative. I want us to be competitive this year and we still have a strong squad. We have to be a bit patient because those other factors are there. But that doesn’t mean we can’t go out there with that competitive head on and challenge in everything that we do. My job is to focus on the task at hand

[Lampard has taken the reins at Chelsea from Maurizio Sarri and insists he will not be looking to make too many tweaks to tactics and personnel] I certainly won’t be changing things for change’s sake. But where there are ideas that are different, I have to be strong in those and stick to what I believe will take the club forwards on the pitch. The players have to come along with that because we want to be successful and that takes a lot of hard work and being together as a group

2019 08 17b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has moved to highlight his admiration for Chelsea midfielder Jorginho] I thought Jorginho was fantastic the other night. He was constantly talking to people around him and constantly talking to the backline to drag them up and playing with quality. The players are the ones who drive that when they get out there. He is a fantastic player. I saw that on the first day of training in Dublin. Talking about his attitude, he is a driver of the group and he has real quality. I am fortunate in midfield at the moment.

It gives us problems in terms of competition between Kante, Jorginho, [Matteo] Kovacic, [Ross] Barkley, [Mason] Mount, Ruben [Loftus-Cheek] is coming back and others. But Jorginho has really shown himself to be a top-quality player to me already. I am pleased to see his comments. He should be seen as Chelsea’s Jorginho. As a player, you know that you go and work for the club. He has a real passion for football and performance. I love that

I was very ready for that. Being a player who played here, we were always as competitive for leagues and Champions Leagues as we could be. You feel the level there as a player, the level of attention and criticism on your performance. As a manager, of course, it is inflated because you take on more responsibility. I wasn’t surprised by it. You have to be ready for it. You have to be ready to answer questions. You have to be ready to know what you are feeling

My first feeling is, can I protect my players? Can I protect my club? Can I protect myself? Because I know we are working with the right intention and in the right direction. I know you have to pick and choose your battles. As I say, your eye should never come off what we do here every day as the important thing. What somebody says, or people say around it, is not the important thing. If you get caught up in that, then you will have many sleepless nights over things that are not important about where you want to get to

2019 08 17c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard speaks about Stephanie Frappart’s appointment for the Super Cup] It’s great news. I’m very pleased to be a part of this moment in history, which is very much due. I think the game has come on a long way in many ways in terms of the Women’s World Cup that we all watched this summer, in terms of how much respect the game’s getting, how many people are watching, the interest in the game. I think we were slow everywhere on this and now we’re trying to make strides, and there’s still a long way to go. It’s a huge moment. It should be very well addressed and we are pleased it’s a historical moment and it’s one more step in the right direction

2019 08 18 Retrieve

[Chelsea vs Leicester City. Frank Lampard openly admitted that he was under no illusion that the challenge ahead of him would be a tough one too] Things surprise you in football management every day but the situation has been exactly what I expected. I knew about the transfer ban, I knew Eden Hazard had left the club, I knew we were losing two strikers in Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain and I knew we couldn’t buy anyone. I knew we had five or six major injuries. I knew all that but the last thing I want to be is negative. I want us to be competitive this year and we still have a strong squad. We have to be a bit patient because those other factors are there. But that doesn’t mean we can’t go out there with that competitive head on and challenge in everything that we do. My job is to focus on the task at hand

2019 08 18b Retrieve

[Mason Mount will be key for the Blues this season and he proved his manager was right to pick him ahead of Ross Barkley, going close on two other occasions in the first half] Mason is so hungry but he has a very good understanding of what he needs to be as a player. This will be a good season for him. If he carries on the way he is going, then he will be a huge influence for us

2019 08 18c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has said that he was happier with his team’s performance in the 4-0 defeat to Manchester United last weekend than in their 1-1 draw with Leicester on Sunday] It’s a results business. It’s strange because the performance against Manchester United overall made me happier than today even though it was a 4-0 result. We need both. I believe we have both in us because we have good quality, so we have performances in us as we’ve shown that already. There’s moments and personality moments in the game when we need to be tougher. We have to have game management. If a game turns slightly, and it didn’t even turn against us big time in the first half as it was just a feeling of them having more possession and being in the game, we’re good enough to wrestle that back and move the ball better. That’s something all of us can work on

[Lampard was loath to cite fatigue after their midweek fixture as a factor in the result against Leicester, but conceded it was on his mind] I hate the tiredness excuse, but it has to be a factor in the second half of the game. I saw Liverpool play and I know it would have been tough for them, we were all in it, we had 120 minutes, we flew home the next day up to five in the morning, so I think it might have affected us later in the game. But I think that if that is a factor, we can take it out of the game by being better on the ball and too many times we allowed the counter attack. I feel for the players on that one, but I don’t want to use it as an overriding excuse

2019 08 18d Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard said that Mason Mount’s opening goal for Chelsea is just the first big moment for the midfielder] The epitome of his talent is the goal. Great off the ball and energy to close people down and then the quality to finish it. In those opening periods he could have almost scored two more goals. He will get better and better as he’s 20 years of age. That’s the first of some big moments for Mason going forward. I’m delighted for him on that level and I know he will be slightly disappointed as he would have wanted that goal to be a part of a win. He will get better

[Blues’ transfer ban has played a role in the youngsters getting minutes on the pitch] If there were frustrations in the crowd, there were frustrations in the team and on the bench. We’re working in one way here and we want to do well. We know that in the circumstances that there are some tough elements this year. We couldn’t bring players in, I couldn’t as a new manager bring any players to help push the way I’m thinking, we lost Eden (Hazard) and he was so pivotal to this club. I think everyone’s understanding of that and we will be patient, but I don’t want to use that as the huge factor. We can do better than we did for 60 minutes today and we will do for sure. We need to look at how we played in the first half hour and replicate that because that was all of the team really at it. We need to sustain that

2019 08 18e Retrieve

[Frank Lampard said his return to Stamford Bridge as manager was a special moment, but that he was disappointed with Chelsea’s 1-1 draw with Leicester City] It felt great. it is a special moment for me to come back to the club and manage them at Stamford Bridge, of course it is the stuff of dreams. For me it is a huge thing, but my focus today was on the match and trying to win. Thanks very much to the fans, I appreciate that, but I am here to do a job and here to try and win for the club and we can do better than we did today

[He also said his club must do more to cement their dominance, by focusing on ball retention] The first 25 minutes, we still had chances after Mason Mount scored, that first patch is how we want to play and the rest of the game wasn’t quite how we want to play. Credit to Leicester for that, they put us under pressure, we weren’t good enough in possession after the first 25 minutes, which gifted them possession back. We gave them the feeling that, because we didn’t score the second that they were in the game. In the second half we left far too many spaces for them, they are a very good team on the counter attack, they have got good individual players who can really hurt you. That was the disappointing thing, we couldn’t sustain the period in the early part of the game. I don’t expect the 100mph energy for 90 minutes, but I do expect that when you rest you do keep possession of the ball better

2019 08 20 Retrieve

[When quizzed on the interest being shown in an Italy international and his place in the plan of those in west London] That’s not clear yet, Davide Zappacosta is our player. Reece James is injured. There will probably be another two or three weeks until he is back. That’s another decision that will be made as we go on. I have been really impressed with Zappacosta’s training, attitude and how he has been. He is a very good player. We have to make sure that we are happy with our squad when the European windows shut completely. That will be a decision for us and, of course, Zappa. I want players happy. The professionalism that he has shown here has been great. That’s an ongoing conversation, but he is our player

2019 08 20b Retrieve

[Manager Frank Lampard revealed last week that Callum Hudson-Odoi would soon be available] He’s getting closer. He’s trained the last week or two with the Under-23s and is looking good. There is going to be a period of conditioning work for him. The injury looks good, which is the great news’. The injury looks good which is the great news. Then he’s going to have to be fitter than he’s ever been because I’m going to want him to run!

2019 08 21 Retrieve

[After starting and claiming an assist in the Blues UEFA Super Cup loss to Liverpool, Christian Pulisic played 71 minutes against Leicester City on the weekend with Lampard impressed with what’s he’s been seeing] am really happy with him. There is lots, lots more to come. Again, [he’s showing] all the good signs for what he can be for the club. The expectancy is right, he is a big signing for us but you have to remember his age

2019 08 21b Retrieve

[Blues manager Frank Lampard has spoken about the futures of both Bakayoko and Zappacosta, the latter of whom has arrived in Rome and is having his medical on Wednesday] Yes, it is similar with both players. They obviously haven’t both started this season for us or had minutes. Both have shown great application and not been a problem. The decision will be what’s best for us as a club and them individually.

2019 08 22 Retrieve

[Chelsea winger Kenedy is exploring options to leave the Blues permanently. Chelsea manager Lampard last spoke about Kenedy’s future a month ago] In terms of Kenedy, my feeling coming into a big squad with a transfer ban was that I need to assess the players for as long as I can in pre-season. We need to make sure we pick a squad, with me having had good eyes on them in training and in games. If Kenedy continues to show the attitude and plays the way he played, then he’s given a great case to stay here. I know he has been out on loan in recent seasons, and been part of the squad. Nobody is in or out of the squad. There’s nobody who has had a line drawn under them or over them. Everyone is competing and the squad will be picked in due time

2019 08 23 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has become the latest luminary to congratulate Fernando Torres on a trophy-laden career following the decision to hang up his boots] We are still in touch. He was in touch when I hung my boots up and I did the same for him, because there’s respect there and he was very good in the dressing room. He had some tough times here (at Chelsea) but he had some big moments too, and in his career he had huge moments. A huge congratulations on his career and I wish him well in whatever he chooses to do now

2019 08 23b Retrieve

[Lampard insists Chelsea don’t need a Drogba despite goalscoring issues] Look at Liverpool. Across the front three, they scored 60-something goals last season between the three of them but every team is its own entity and it doesn’t have to be one way to win a game or to score a goal. We have to score from different areas of the pitch and that’s pretty clear. We need to score more goals at this moment, for sure. That’s work for the squad. We will have to find it among the group. I know those stats and I know how many goals Eden Hazard was part of, in terms of scoring and assisting. So, they are facts that are real and ones we have to try to address with work. Which means, can we score goals from other areas of the pitch?

Can we be more clinical upfront? And then the challenge is clear for the strikers and the attacking players. Can you be the players to score those goals? Because I agree the top teams in the league tend to have players that are scoring regularly. They do win games that are tight, who do make you clear in games in good periods, that you score enough goals to put the game to bed. And that’s a challenge for us because it’s something we aren’t doing and we need to do

[The Belgian Eden Hazard provided 16 goals in the Premier League last season to go with 15 assists as Chelsea finished third behind only Manchester City and Liverpool] The Eden thing, we all know the reliance in terms of his output was huge and he is in the top bracket of players in world football, attacking players in world football, so you have to accept that. But I haven’t considered that, and the players should just play as they play. There is enough quality in this team to win games for sure without Eden. I understand certainly Mateo Kovacic, he has the ability and quality in his game and talent to chip in with goals, but I can’t ask them to be all things in one at one point, [like expecting] Jorginho to set the tempo from midfield and knock in 10 goals a season.

That would be tough. But as a team and from the wide areas and certainly from the striking areas, if players like Mason Mount and Ross Barkley have those attributes. Ruben Loftus-Cheek when he was in the team last year has those sorts of attributes. Those players, of course, I would ask for a contribution from them. Goals are important from the modern midfield player to try to reach double figures and more. I have belief in Tammy and Oli and Michy, our wide players, from midfield. to score goals. It is certainly not the way we should be looking at it, ‘I wish we had a Didier Drogba.’ No, this is 2019. We need to try and score goals and look at the problem ahead of us

[Lampard has gone for a different approach than his opposite number and has a clear penalty taker at Chelsea] The Di Canio situation, I think he had been injured, I had taken one and scored it, and he came back into the team and he was the man. Probably quite rightly he took the ball in the end there. I was probably trying to make a little mark and I got put in my place by Di Canio, which was fine. That was a little lesson there. And actually, it happened a few years later with Didier at Chelsea, and we had a penalty and me and Didier are like that, we are very close, and it was dealt with very quickly.

I watched the game and I saw the comments around it on the television straight after, and I can see all sides of that story. It can happen. People feel competitive, feel confident in the moment, where you have a penalty taker and you also have a second pen taker if things happen in games. I think it is really important to do that, especially if you are really confident, and someone is your man. But that is not always the case. So, it is very easy to comment from the outside, where you have a couple of players that are vying for it and that are confident in games then you can have issues. The issues only arrive when the ball does not go into the net

2019 08 23c Retrieve

[Lampard puts faith in misfiring Chelsea forwards after Batshuayi’s goalscoring return] Michy got the fitness work he needed out of the game. He scored two good goals, two very good finishes. I thought he worked hard and that’s exactly what the game was there to do for him. As I’ve said here and I’ve said on the training pitch, we need Michy, we need the competition upfront with the three strikers we have. I used to love practising my finishing in training, it’s what I felt made me lucky at the weekend, and gave me an edge in front of goal. What I have got is great attitude in the three strikers particularly, but others in the squad also always want to stay out, want to work harder. The reality is that moments come when things don’t quite go for you. [If] Tammy’s goal goes in off the post against United, [it’s a] different story for him, different story for the game. But you can’t get too down about that. I don’t think we need to go negative about it. It’s about positivity, working hard and the belief that it will come, and I believe it will come. We’re talking about quality players in terms of our attacking players, so it will come

This is the Premier League and you can’t disrespect any team to say, ‘it’s must-win’ or ‘we’ll turn up to win’ because every game is difficult. I was clear with the players: the performance [against Leicester] spoke for itself. The first half was fantastic. Normally that first half would be two or three-nil, and from then on very comfortable. We’ve shown some really good bits, but we’ve still got work to do. We’re not where we want to be, and it would be impossible to say that three games into the season. It’s not easy in pre-season with players coming back late to try and change everything in one go. You can’t. You just have to work hard and keep trying to deliver messages throughout. We’ll get better and the good times are good, but we also know there’s a lot to improve on. We’re not there yet

Kante has got an injury he has carried all week, so we’ll assess that over the next 24 hours over whether he is [available]. Rudiger’s not fit yet, hopefully for next week. That’s the only changes from where we were last week. Callum is training, looking bright and sharp but now we’re in the zone where it’s about protecting him, giving him conditioning with fitness, especially in the area of his injury. He has had quite a long time out. The international break comes at quite a good time for us with both of those and for Reece James. They’re all in a position where, I hope, two or three weeks of strong training puts them back in the frame for the squad

2019 08 24 Retrieve

[Norwich (2) vs (3) Chelsea. Lampard pleased to see Tammy Abraham get him off the mark] It was a tough test and Norwich will get a lot of points here because they are a very good side. I thought we played really well. The two goals we gave away I didn’t like but there were lots of good elements to our play and I’m really pleased. We need to be more clinical. First win and I’m really pleased. We need to win games, we’re Chelsea. Nothing is given in this league. Our performances haven’t given us what we deserved so far - but today it did

[Lampard added on a player he is showing considerable faith in, with Mason Mount having netted the Blues’ other effort] I’m particularly pleased for Tammy, his first goals for us and he scored two good goals and the winning goal, but I want to talk about all the players today as we controlled the game on a hot day

[Asked for an update on their respective ailments] Pedro felt his hamstring in the warm-up so maybe a small strain there but Mason was just a kick to his calf so hopefully he can quickly recover

2019 08 24b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes Mason Mount deserves to view himself as a bona fide Chelsea player] I spoke to Mason yesterday and asked him if he felt like he was a Chelsea player yet because it is important. He just sort of smiled. He’s a confident boy, in a really nice way. He’s got a humility and a work ethic, but he smiled and we had a laugh. I didn’t really get a clear answer but he should feel like [a Chelsea player] if he plays like he is at the moment

We want to win games, I want to stay in contention. I didn’t want a slow start. We had a tough start and I have got to say I am happy with a lot of the performances, but you can’t shout that too loudly if you aren’t winning games. So it changes it for me, today. I am very happy. It gives me more determination to work

[Chelsea have a week to prepare for their next game away to Sheffield United, which should give Mount time to recover from a minor injury he suffered late in proceedings] Mason took a knock to his calf, so that is better than a strain, obviously. Hopefully in a couple of days it will settle down, so hopefully that is good news. We will assess it

2019 08 25 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is hoping France allow [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) to sit out the international break in order to work on his physical condition] It is a difficult one. He has had four years of constantly playing. [The] injury from the Europa League final has affected his pre-season. Then he hurt himself against Man United. We are trying to get him through it. Today was too painful. The international break will be great for him to get the injury right. It would be great for everybody [if Kante stays] because he’s been playing game after game after game

[Lampard said of Mason Mount’s inclusion for England] It is Gareth’s shout. I would hate to second guess or have a headline to say what his squad should be. He’ll watch games. I know that they know a lot about Mason. I’ve said it a lot last year. Being called up for his country, that’s hopefully going to come pretty soon again. He can go absolutely to the top. He’s impressed me. He had another step on in pre-season. At Derby, he was great. But that’s one thing. Coming to Chelsea, with the competition he’s got in midfield and the expectation level that comes with it, is another thing. I keep going on about his character. For me, it’s such a big percentage of the package and he has all of that and he has the quality. Intelligent players who have that talent are really great to work with. I don’t want to heap expectation on him. But I will tell him that every day because I feel it, and when someone’s humble and hard-working like him, it doesn’t matter. You can tell them because it will never stop his drive or his hunger. He’s not a boy that wants the razzmatazz of it all, he just wants to be a top player for Chelsea and then England and I believe he can be. It certainly helps but he’s driven and he’s not going to get carried away with himself. It’s the way his family have brought him up. He is a pleasure to work with

2019 08 26 Retrieve

[Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham subject to vile social media posts after he missed the deciding spot-kick in the UEFA Super Cup penalty shootout against Liverpool. Frank Lampard slammed the ‘disgusting comments’ against the young English striker] I am disgusted by this so-called Chelsea fan. I don’t know how it’s allowed - it’s too easy. Something needs to be done, as well as obviously changing mindsets completely. I’m so angry for Tammy and angry for us as a club, because that’s not what we’re about. The club does a lot of work against discrimination at all levels and it’s a setback when these things happen

2019 08 28 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits that the club’s two-window transfer ban makes the challenge of competing in this season’s Champions League that much harder] It’s a big challenge for us as a team. We know that with the difficulties of the ban and where we’re at. But it shouldn’t take away from the great challenge that it is to try to do well in [the Champions League]. I think the Premier League is so strong and that is clear when you have two teams [like Man City and Liverpool]. Manchester City are clearly absolutely a top team in world football. I think the English teams are strong at the moment and I hope that continues, because I think that’s great for us in England and the Premier League.

It’s important for us, it’s where we want to be. It gets tougher every year, coming third last year and winning the Europa League gets them that [elite] status. It is where we want to be. I had some great nights in it, great moments and great memories. Talking about the players, they want to play in it and show what we are about. It is nice that we are there. It means that we need to keep our league performances up now to be there next year and tackle it head on. It is the greatest club competition in football and I was lucky enough to win it once. I’m looking forward to working in it as a manager

2019 08 30 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard laughed off a comparison between Mason Mount and James Maddison being called up by England and his own experiences with Steven Gerrard] I can’t believe you’ve gone Lampard and Gerrard. I thought we’d moved on! There’s been a lot of talk of my generation with England. Now, sitting on this side, we have intelligent players. We had Mason Mount and Ross Barkley in the same team on the same side of the pitch last week. We played against Maddison a few weeks ago and I was hugely impressed, two intelligent footballers who can adapt to positions

[Lampard also has no concerns over Mount’s selection coming too early] We’re delighted for Mason Mount. Great recognition, delighted he’s got this chance again. I’m not concerned about it. I’m confident in his strength of character, desire and hunger. Those things won’t affect him. Everyone has to keep their feet on the ground

[Mount’s team-mate Tammy Abraham did not make the cut] It’s a matter of time for Tammy, hopefully. Really impressed [with his maturity]. His character and how he dealt with the situation was brilliant in terms of the Twitter nonsense. He dealt with it first-hand and rose above it, which isn’t easy

2019 08 30b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard will leave [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) out of Chelsea’s next match against Sheffield United as he wants to see his midfielder get more rest after suffering his second injury in quick succession] We were close with the Super Cup. We had a fitness test on the morning of, because I felt he was so important for the game we had coming. I appreciated his desire to stay in the game and play the game. But in the end, no. It wasn’t a case of having to say anything. It naturally got to the point where he needs the break. There was an element of that [needing to hold him back]. Because he’s such a good lad as far as I’ve seen, he’s really easy to work with – he just wants to work and do the business. The Europa League final, I wasn’t here for that obviously, but it was hugely impressive that he got through that game and had the impact that he did. But he then carried the injury into pre-season, everything came on top so we all decided, him and me first and foremost, that it was time to get this right and move on from here after the break

I’m not worried at all about any of the long-term effects. It’s more can we show him a little bit of TLC? In terms of he’s got a problem, he’s got a pain in his ankle. It’s not a huge injury but can we get that right and then start anew? He missed pre-season but the international break falls at the right time for him. I don’t expect any issues unless there is something I don’t know coming up. A lot of his qualities will help the way I want to play, for sure

[In Kante’s absence, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic have suitably filled in as defensive midfielders] I was delighted to hear that myself. I’ve said it a lot now: he’s been a pleasure to work with. I do think that with fans, they are generally pretty honest. What they’re seeing is a player - I don’t want to talk about last year - but what they see now is a player who has a drive, has a determination as a team player. I certainly see that. He also has quality. He can change a game, lead a game, own a game from midfield areas. I’m delighted with that. I see day-to-day what playing for this club means. He’s just a fantastic sportsman who cares deeply. When you have a training session that might fall below a standard or drop for a moment, he’s the one who drives it up again. When the fans see that on the pitch, as they did at Norwich, that’s why they sing his name. I’m delighted with that.

The thing I noticed from the outside last year is that he never hid. He never hid from receiving the ball on the edge of his box or a tight area. He was always there to receive it. And he played really well during the run-in, I thought, for Chelsea. That’s a sign of his character and, again, that’s what the fans will applaud and long may it continue. I love them singing every player’s name because every player should be giving them a reason to. All I see now is a really good player who is a leader in the group. Yeah, I’m delighted the fans sung his name in Norwich. Hopefully, it continues at the Bridge and we hear it every week

[Baba Rahman will also likely leave with less than a year left on his deal and Lampard explained his situation ahead of deadline day] At the moment Baba Rahman’s not training with us in the matchday or the first-team squad. In terms of his future, we are at the middle of the conversation it’s about finding the right path for him individually. Maybe for him, it is to go on loan to play regularly. He’s not training with us at the moment. He’s training with the loan players and the under-23s. His path remains to be seen while the window is open

2019 08 31 Retrieve

[Chelsea (2) vs (2) Sheffield United. Frank Lampard lamented two points thrown away on Saturday after Chelsea were pegged back] It was under control, it is our fault for gifting them a goal in the first minute of the second half. It’s a similar story already. The game should have been comfortable and we have dropped two points. We want to win games, the emergence of youth is one thing but winning games is another. When you are 2-0 up at half-time you should win the game. We had more than enough on the pitch to win that game from 2-0 up. There is no chance that that game should swing like that. We gave them the possibility to hurt us

[Tammy Abraham’s play was a bright spot for Chelsea, with the 21-year-old now having scored a brace in back-to-back games] Tammy Abraham is doing well, his all-round game was great and he needs to continue

2019 08 31b Retrieve

[Chelsea (2) vs (2) Sheffield United. Frank Lampard has again taken aim at social media after Kurt Zouma was racially abused] We have to look at social media and the platforms and give them some accountability, to actually have people registered who can be chased down for it. I think it’s simple. Until we get to that, however horrible the conversation is, we are all going to get tired talking about it because if there’s no culpability then anyone can say anything to anyone. I don’t care if it’s racism, it could be homophobia, sexism -– if we allow it then it’s out there and it has to be dealt with

[Earlier this month, Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham was targeted after missing the vital penalty in a shootout against Liverpool in the UEFA Super Cup] The social media companies, are they ever going to stop someone casually putting up what someone did against Tammy Abraham? That’s their responsibility. I think we have plans [to meet with companies]. Everyone knows where we want to go with it and not just with our players, any player

[Chelsea’s defence has not been up to standard in the season’s early going] It’s not defence, it’s conceding as a team. There was a lack of concentration and mistakes at moments for the goals but you defend as a team as much as you attack as a team. We conceded because we switched off in a game we should be comfortably seeing out, and that is no disrespect to Sheffield United

2019 08 31c Retrieve

[After Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Sheffield United where 18-year-old Billy Gilmour debuted due to injury issues, Lampard spoke about why he let go of Tiemoue Bakayoko and Danny Drinkwater in the circumstance] Danny has been here for two years and hadn’t played many games. He was eager for his own benefit, which I felt was good for us. Bakayoko similarly was here for one season, went on loan and going on loan again to try to bring himself back to where he wants to be. If you want to talk midfield players we have got Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic, [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html), Mason Mount, Ross Barkley, Reece James coming back from injury who can play in midfield, Andreas Christensen who can play in midfield. I have to make decisions on the squad as a whole, that is my job

2019 09 01 Retrieve

[Chelsea (2) vs (2) Sheffield United. Frank Lampard believes the emergence of Tammy Abraham has been a huge boost for Chelsea so far this season] I am delighted with Tammy, delighted with his attitude. He has a great attitude in training and a desire to score. I thought his all-round game as well was good. We are working with Tammy, all the staff, to help little bits of his game where he can be even better. He is very receptive to that. I thought his performance was class. It is everything you want from him and he is unlucky not to have three, I suppose. I would have loved it for him [to get called up by England], but he can take a bit of a breather. We can work with him because it is a constant with all the younger players. I think England will come calling

[Lampard has focused on the positives so far in his early time back in west London, but he chose not to protect his players following Kurt Zouma’s 89th-minute own goal against the Blades] I wasn’t happy. I was not overly happy with the first half. I thought they gifted us two goals. I thought our performance was okay. I felt we were in a dangerous position. I was very clear about that. It wasn’t a happy half-time. The warning signs were there in my opinion and we didn’t react to that on the pitch. No, [it wasn’t the fault of individuals]. It was general. I thought generally we had to move the ball quicker. We were taking too much time.

We worked a lot on Sheffield United and their style of play and how we could move the ball to give them problems. I don’t think we were doing it as I wanted us to do it and I think that was a contributing factor. I was feeling we were slow in possession that was giving them opportunities. I saw it coming. If we were to go out and make a mistake, it wasn’t bad in the first half, but there were signs that we needed to tighten up. That was the message. I am asking for different things in the way we play and the movement of the ball. There have been signs in all our games, but not enough as far as I am concerned. Everyone has different reasons, younger players have to grow up and older players worry about themselves as well as helping others. [N’Golo] Kante will help because he is world class. We all know that. It is healthy for him to have a two-week, not rest, but recuperation from his injury. He is a big plus for us. Some of the injuries that are coming back so the two-week break will help us to that degree

2019 09 13 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has ruled [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) out of his side’s upcoming clashes with Wolves and Valencia] N’Golo is not fit. He still has issues with his ankle. The medical team are working with him. He is in a transition period and we are trying to get him on the pitch. He is doing some physical work but this game comes too soon for him. Hopefully he is close. I don’t want to jump the gun because we are waiting for improvements for that final step to get him where we want him to be on the pitch. Hopefully that will be in the next week or so

[Lampard confirms defender Antonio Rudiger is available once again, while Pedro and Mateo Kovacic are also fit] Rudiger is fit to play. It’s a choice for myself, but he will have an important role. We have missed him as we have with a few more front line players. Rudiger is not old but he needs to take on the responsibility of being a leader. It is important in a team. I don’t want a young team for the sake of it. He can be influential. He is ready to take on those roles

[Meanwhile, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James are set to step up their recovery from injury by featuring for the Chelsea Under 23s in Friday night’s match against Brighton. And Lampard is delighted to see the pair on the way back to the team] Callum will play for the Under-23s along with Reece James. He has been training for a while but there are some issues to make sure that he’s okay. It will be great to see that. James, not as long out, but he needs games. I am pleased

2019 09 13b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard confirms Antonio Rudiger is ready to return from the knee injury he suffered in April and could feature against Wolves on Saturday] Rudiger is fit to play. That’s obviously a choice for me [if he starts], but he’ll have an important role because of his personality, character and quality as an international defender. We have missed him, as we have with a few more frontline players. It is important as a team, everyone talks about how young we are and becoming, I don’t want a young team for the sake of it. I want leaders within that. Rudiger isn’t old but he certainly needs to take on the responsibility of being a leader. I see it in his personality that he has. It has to be channelled in the right direction and he can then be very influential for the team and also for the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori. This happens when you become more experienced and he is ready to take on those roles

[N’Golo Kante remains sidelined, however, having suffered an ankle injury against Leicester City in Chelsea’s second league game of the season] Mateo Kovacic is fit to play, N’Golo is not fit yet. He still has issues with his ankle. The medical team are working with him. He is in a transition period and we are trying to get him on the pitch. He is doing some physical work but this game comes too soon for him. Hopefully he is close. I don’t want to jump the gun because we are waiting for improvements for that final step to get him where we want him to be on the pitch. Hopefully that will be in the next week or so, and again, alongside Rudiger, Willian, Callum and Ruben Loftus-Cheek. They are big players who are really going to up our level because they will compete to play. Pedro is fine too, yes.

2019 09 13c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is backing Cesar Azpilicueta to overcome a run of poor form early in the season] Firstly, I played with Azpilicueta and I know him very well and he is the first player to stand up. He has been an incredible player for a club that has won a lot and he has been central to winning a lot. He is not just a bystander. He has been right in the middle of it all and he will be more critical than anyone of his form and what it means. He will be the first one who wants to address it every minute of the day in training. I think he is a big player for us and a big personality. I see no problem. I remember in my career countless times playing with better players than I was that had little moments in their career that, for whatever reason, people want to talk about. The top ones come through it. Azpilicueta is a top player and I don’t think there are any major issues. In the modern-day all eyes are on and if there is a bit of a mistake or a moment, people want to do that, and players have to put up with that. I have got no problem. Azpi will comfortably put up with that

[Lampard has confirmed that [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) remains out injured, while Emerson Palmieri will miss out due to an injury sustained on international duty with Italy. Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James returned for the club’s Under-23 side on Friday night but Lampard says that rules him out of replacing Azpilicueta at the Molineux Stadium] Yes, it is too early for Reece. Tonight is more minutes and it won’t be 90 minutes, probably more around 45 minutes because of where he is at so there is a bit of a plan with him. Reece is also adaptable. So are certain other players. He played the run-in at Wigan in defensive midfield last year. He can play right centre-back, right-back. There are options

[Lampard isn’t expecting to add the forgotten former PSV loan star Marco van Ginkel to the squad anytime soon] He’s long term. He has unfortunately had some complications with knee surgery. I wouldn’t want to put any time frame we will leave him to do his rehab which he is doing very diligently. His demeanour is as good as it could be. He is here working every hour of the day. He is positive even if inside I’m sure it is tough for him

[A tough week is ahead after his players have returned from international duty with Wolves away followed by Valencia and Liverpool at home] If anyone’s jumping to conclusions it is because they’re looking at Liverpool and City, because they are the dominant teams who have got good results so far, particularly Liverpool. Other than that, I think it is too easy. We’re on the same points as Manchester United and Tottenham. Other teams that might be less fancied than us are on higher points than us, so I think now is certainly too early to make long-term predictions. We have conceded more than we would want to. It is our job to put it right. We will focus on different elements of the game. Sometimes you can sit down and not worry about one part that is going really well, but of course, if things show themselves, you have to address them. We regularly have videos. I don’t like the defending vs attacking thing because I think some of the goals that we have conceded have been individual errors or we’ve given away possession and let them score. That means that it is your attacking that is not so good as your defending, so we always try and look at both sides

2019 09 14 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard accepted Chelsea are facing a challenge to finish in the Premier League’s top six amid a changing landscape] Yeah, they should [sense an opportunity]. They should do because from almost being able to write the top four down at the start of the season, certainly now you can’t. A top six you can’t write down because, with the playing field of what we have got now, where teams are investing heavily, you have to respect them. They are well managed, they have good players, they are competitive. There are no easy games in the Premier League, more than ever. We’ve seen it changing before our eyes because I remember last year people talking about Everton and Leicester. And Wolves probably came on their own, competing towards the top six and I think that is the landscape

[Lampard believes that it is important that the Premier League club’s circumstances are taken into consideration when judging their place in the table] We always want to be competitive but we’re all very honest about the situation here. Eden Hazard moved on, and two number nines [Gonzalo Higuain and Alvaro Morata] moved on who were the number nines generally last season. Younger players are coming in

2019 09 14b Retrieve

[Wolves vs Chelsea. Frank Lampard is acutely aware of the challenge now facing his side] They should. They should do because from almost being able to write the top four down at the start of the season, certainly now you can’t. A top six you can’t write down because, with the playing field of what we have got now, where teams are investing heavily, you have to respect them. They are well managed, they have good players, they are competitive. There are no easy games in the Premier League, more than ever

2019 09 14c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard expressed his delight at the impact of his young Chelsea players after watching his team thrash Wolves 5-2 at Molineux] Delighted for them all but particularly for Fikayo Tomori. He has worked so hard from where he started to now, it’s superb. Also Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount - we are trying to give chances to the youngsters and they are scoring, taking their chances and showing us why we should keep putting them in the team. They deserve it, they have the quality but they also have a love for the club because they have come through the ranks. Its not just the youngsters though – players like Willian are having fantastic performances that are just as key

[Yet Tammy Abraham now sits top of the scoring charts this term following his triple against Wolves, the third of which was a brilliant solo effort] I am so delighted for him. I know how hard the academy works and Tammy has an enthusiasm to score goals and he has a fantastic approach to the game and how he wants to progress. All three goals were so different, it just shows what he can do. We know where we are at. Very happy [with the result]. I think we have had some performances where we have not got results we haven’t wanted but to come to Wolves and win well, is important. We need to continue now

2019 09 14d Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is hopeful Antonio Rudiger will not miss any time after he had to leave the thrilling 5-2 win over Wolves with a groin injury] He’s had a groin issue which he bothered as he came off the pitch near me - he slipped onto the metal which made him have to slide and adjust himself so he bothered his groin. He ran off the pitch and unfortunately he bothered it then. It’s a quick turnaround but hopefully [he can play Valencia]. Hopefully not too bad. It’s more of a precaution because he did feel some pain, so we’ll assess it over the next couple of days

2019 09 15 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard will be tougher than ever on Tammy Abraham after the Chelsea striker scored a hat-trick in a 5-2 victory over Wolves on Saturday] I felt that knowing his abilities and watching him in the Championship have two great seasons and in the Premier League, I felt it was more than time for him to have his opportunity. He needed to show it in pre-season and at the start of the season, hence he started at Manchester United. I have competition up there. I definitely don’t want to down-talk Giroud and Batshuayi because we need them as well and Batshuayi looked sharp when he came on and Oli always gives something of a high level, so it was up to Tammy to show it. I’ve got confidence in him and I’m prepared to give him chances, but even more now I’ll be tougher on him because he’s shown what he can do. So the moment he wants to come off that and think that goals will just drop at his feet will be a moment when maybe he will be rested, so it’s important he makes sure he stays on his game. I’m happy because I see him every day with a feeling like he wants to play every day, to score goals every day and that’s something a bit special. You don’t see that in all young players and it’s a great gift in him

[Lampard thinks it will be impossible for Gareth Southgate to overlook the Blues youngster again if he maintains his form] The way he’s going it’s obviously going to put him in that bracket, without telling Gareth what to do. To score seven goals in three games and be top scorer and play with the quality he’s playing in his all-round game - the three different types of goals he scored are exactly what you want from Tammy: a messy one, a good header and then a fantastic feet and finish goal. He has to sustain it and he has to get even better. He has to be hungry, which I know he is. He can never rest on his laurels because there is more work to be done and that England squad is a few weeks away. He needs to keep playing at that level and he’ll have a great chance, I’d suggest.

[Asked if he had talked to Abraham amid reports Nigeria are keen to offer him an alternative route into international football] No. No, that’s not my choice. I know Tammy’s been in England squads before and I’m not surprised Nigeria would want him, but that’s a question for him I suppose

2019 09 15b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says that Callum Hudson-Odoi’s return is not far off] I did watch him. I spoke with him this morning. He’s not far off. We have to be careful because it was a big injury and what we have done is actually got him back out on time but we have to make sure the strength is right in the area because that could lead to other injuries if we go too soon. The way he played on Friday, I think he’s not far away. He’s been training with us now for two or three weeks. We have got the Carabao Cup coming the midweek next and that will maybe be an opportunity to look at players who have been injured or different options. In between, if players, if Callum, shows this week how good he is in training I’ll have to consider him probably from now on. The comforting thing about today is you look at the bench and there are options, particularly in attacking areas. It was a strong bench and we still major injuries. To think we have Kante, Callum who played last night and Reece James knocking on the door again, Ruben and other players coming back. I have opportunities because of the size of the squad but at the same time, I want to keep consistency. After a performance like today, that’s where we need to go. We need to play like that and get results. It’s my job now to balance it out

[Lampard has other youngsters at his disposal, with Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori all scoring against Wolves, and he is ready to use them European games] I won’t consider age. I don’t consider it because they’ve shown confidence, personality in the group. That’s easy. I just pick them on merit. Confidence and momentum is great. It’s not quite momentum yet but it is a good feeling to see the team play how they did. We need more clean sheets and we continually need to work on that. The Champions League is the top club competition in world football and I’m sure Mason, Tammy, Tomori are all excited for it. All the players should be. I’m looking forward to it, my debut as a manager

2019 09 16 Retrieve

[Blues boss Lampard has also stressed he won’t be letting Tammy Abraham rest on his laurels after a bright start to the season] I felt that knowing his abilities and watching him in the Championship have two great seasons and in the Premier League, I felt it was more than time for him to have his opportunity. He needed to show it in pre-season and at the start of the season, hence he started at Manchester United. I have competition up there. I definitely don’t want to down-talk Giroud and Batshuayi because we need them as well and Batshuayi looked sharp when he came on and Oli always gives something of a high level, so it was up to Tammy to show it. I’ve got confidence in him and I’m prepared to give him chances, but even more now I’ll be tougher on him because he’s shown what he can do. So the moment he wants to come off that and think that goals will just drop at his feet will be a moment when maybe he will be rested, so it’s important he makes sure he stays on his game

2019 09 16b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has no set expectations for Tammy Abraham this season] I never had clear expectations for him, only that I believed in him and trusted him. A lot has been made of the [transfer] ban giving young players the potential opportunities, but I thought the time was right to give Tammy the opportunity at this club anyway because of the quality he’s got. I’m really delighted he’s got his goals, there’s more still to come. He’s in a place now where he just needs to sustain and improve even more, and I think with his mentality and how he is I hope to see that

[When asked about Abraham’s England chances] It’s not a question for me. I’ve just spoken about how I feel about Tammy. He’s put himself in the bracket for England with being top scorer at this point. It’s one for Gareth, I’d hate to step on his toes but it’s clear with what Tammy is doing he’s going to be wanted

2019 09 17 Retrieve

[Chelsea vs Valencia. After seeing the academy graduates shine at the weekend in the Premier League, Lampard is confident they can replicate such form on Europe’s grandest stage against a renowned opponent] I think we have talent that can blossom in the Champions League. I’m confident but very aware of the dangers. Our target is to qualify from a tough group. It is different from league football; the main thing is that the concentration levels throughout the game have to be spot on. The different level can surprise you

2019 09 17b Retrieve

[Former Chelsea forward Eidur Gudjohnsen slammed Barkley for the call after the game, but Lampard was adamant that Barkley is one of his designated takers] Ross is a penalty taker and is when he starts games. It is a great story to say there is contention between players. If he scores it is not a story. But he took it and missed. That is it. The disappointment to all of us is that we didn’t get chance to win the game. There is no issue in the dressing room

[The biggest concern may well have been the ankle injury which saw the in-form Mason Mount forced from the pitch early on] It did affect the game and we know how well he is playing. He looked sharp. It is an ankle injury and hopefully not too bad. It needs to be assessed over the next few days. We shouldn’t lose the game. Clearly. At least not lose it. We had a fair few chances. And then the penalty, which we miss. We have to keep our heads up. There is a long way to go. It is a lesson. Teams at this level can hurt you. I saw Liverpool lost tonight. This is the Champions League and there are tough games. There will be bumps in the road for us with the youth we have and changes we are trying to make. But we need to be strong and be ready with Liverpool here at the weeken

2019 09 17c Retrieve

[Chelsea’s shock 1-0 Champions League defeat to crisis-hit Valencia on Tuesday will be dominated by one incident, and one incident alone] Ross has been the penalty taker in pre-season, Ross has been the penalty taker for us. He missed. He didn’t start the game but he is our penalty taker. It’s just a shame he missed

2019 09 20 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has revealed that Mason Mount could still feature in Sunday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool despite suffering an ankle injury in Tuesday’s Champions League loss to Valencia] He has got a chance. We saw the image of the tackle after and it made it look really bad. Hopefully it’s not so bad, we are trying to get him moving today, it’s one that I will have to call later on before the game. We are trying, the good thing about Mason is his attitude is so good that he will give everything to play for this club. We will have every opportunity to try to get him there. There was a lot of swelling, it didn’t look the best. So injuries with the ankle, from my experience, if there is proper damage there is not much you can do. If it’s swollen you strap it up. We won’t take any risks, there is a bigger picture, we will do our best

[The Blues boss also discussed [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html)’s return to fitness] It is a boost, we know the importance of him for any team that he plays in. The quality that he brings. The question is: how fit he is? He has had a long time out now since the back-end of last season. He has played a couple of games this season, but you can’t count that as much because he missed pre-season. What he did in Istanbul [to play in the Super Cup] was miraculous, rather than the norm. To play how he did without training. Now we have to manage him, similar to Mason, with the bigger pitcure. It’s great to have him back around us

2019 09 20b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has warned Callum Hudson-Odoi the hard work starts now after the teenager signed a new long-term deal] He is a young lad who has come through the academy, the club have worked hard with him, and he has worked hard to get one foot in the first team. For me it felt like it was what everyone wanted. It was away from me slightly with the club dealing with the contract itself. But I made it clear I wanted him at the club because I believe in his talent. Now that a five-year contract is signed it is where the hard work really starts for him. He has got everything we are trying to bring, we know the talent he has, that he has shown on occasions in the first team when he has had his opportunity. I think there is a lot more. It’s pure hard work that will get him there. Now that it is signed and sealed we can put that to bed and get to work

[Lampard emphasised to the teenager that his vision for Chelsea involved putting faith in the club’s youngsters] A lot of the talk was before me, a lot of that talk was from last season, so I only saw that from the outside. The only talks I had were not persuasion, but about how I see it at the club. Hopefully, Callum can look at the other younger players around him getting their opportunities. They are not being handed to them on a plate but because they have earned them because they have worked so hard in pre-season. You talk about Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori, it is a nice thing for him to see and something that he can be hungry for

2019 09 20c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes that his former team-mate Mohamed Salah has proven himself to be a ‘superstar’ after overcoming a Chelsea spell in which some labelled him a failure] It is hard because everyone has their own pathways. Unfortunately for Mo, it didn’t work out here but it is great credit to him. He went to Italy and then came back and now he is a superstar. As for his path, it is hard to compare to what may have been. I had an overlap with him. The talent was obviously there. At the time, I think we had a lot of options in attacking areas. Number 10s, wingers and he didn’t get as many opportunities for whatever reason but yes you could see the talent was there. But the player that he is now or that came back to Liverpool I think you have to say huge credit is due. You don’t have to search for anything more than look at Mo himself. You have to say what professionalism and work ethic to leave a club like Chelsea is not easy. People then cast you aside and say you won’t make it there. He went onto be the superstar he is now. It is completely credit to Mo himself

[Klopp’s side’s last won away at Burnley where Salah and Sadio Mane were involved in an on-pitch argument] They were both in the right. They are competitive lads. I played with players that demanded balls to their feet and I shot and visa versa, I demanded a pass and they shot. I think that edginess about football and that professional competition, as long as it doesn’t overstep the mark which is the job of the manager and that only happens behind the scenes, but I like it. They both want to score goals. They are hungry. They are competitive. They want to be winners. When they play like that, that’s the answer. If they are not playing well enough or not performing and you see that going on then as a manager, you ask more questions but these boys are really driven. I like it. I remember being in the dressing room with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink. After I scored at Southampton, he complained that I hadn’t passed to him in the game and he said I should have passed to him in the game and in a different moment from my goal.

He said, ‘You scored one. There you go you just want to score again and not pass to me.’ This is from a man who shot 20 times a game. That’s it! That was Jimmy, that’s what football is about, it is different personalities. That’s what strikers should be and have to have an element of selfishness about them. I had it as a midfield player. I wanted to be good individually and to be part of a winning team. You can’t have the perfect ambience around at all times around the squad. It is good for players to test each other – if you didn’t, it would be a relaxed nature in the group. I don’t know Mane but I know Salah. He is a really good lad. He is just hungry and I think that’s one of the reasons because of his elevation we spoke about as a player

I think it was a really good performance, yes. When you take into account the opposition then it is certainly up there with the best. We had a few. Wolves last week and Norwich in the league. Other than that it has been parts of games. It has not been quite good enough and that’s what has lost us points. Being good for 45 minutes and not the other half. The idea of having to be good because you want to raise your level because the other team is good is not something I love. I want us to be good every week. It was a test we had in Istanbul and it was something we did rise to. We will have to rise again because the difference with what City and Liverpool are doing now is they are hitting those heights in every game pretty much. It is a surprise when City don’t hit it against Norwich. That’s why they are where they are and what we are working towards as well

2019 09 21 Retrieve

[Where is Captain America? Christian Pulisic off the radar since Liverpool masterclass] He is in our plans but we have got a big squad and a lot of wingers to choose from. With Pedro’s experience in the Champions League, that was the decision to make, but Christian is part of our plans

2019 09 21b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says that the decision to keep Fikayo Tomori in his squad was not solely down to the sale of David Luiz to Arsenal as he trusts the young defender to move on to the next level] I was aware of him, not too much, just from a distance of being aware of players of the youth team at the time who were playing at a good level. Myself and John Terry would keep an eye on young players coming through. At Derby, it happened nicely for me because we needed a centre-back, we only had two last year, actual centre-backs at the start of the season. I knew Fikayo was available and the rest is short-term history, I suppose.

I made the call. It was a nice fit in the end. Having known someone, and Jody had worked closely with him as well, so we knew his attributes and know where he could improve. The real credit of Fikayo is the way that he has approached it all. His mentality from when he came to Derby and to today has been brilliant. From beginning to end, that is why he is improving. I just trust in him. I trust in him as a player, the way that he trains every day, it’s the kind of thing I want to see daily and the way he plays. Of course he is a young player, like all young players there are moments where he can improve and that’s something he constantly needs to work on. I trust in him; hence, I wanted him as part of the squad. That wouldn’t have mattered who might have gone or not. My idea when I came here was to keep Fik part of the squad anyway because I trust him to come and play here. Where better a place to play than the club he has come through at?

[England manager Gareth Southgate may be concerned that Nigeria will try to convince Tomori to switch national allegiances] It’s his choice. I wouldn’t tell him where to play internationally. But he has played for the U21s and if he continues with the form he has and keeps improving then there would be potential for England if Gareth chooses to select him. It’s his call. I think he shouldn’t worry about it too much at the minute. Just worry about the way he is playing and the way he trains. It will be a nice problem for him if he is eligible for three, he can choose which one he wants

2019 09 22 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says he is happy with Chelsea’s performance against Liverpool on Sunday] Performance wise we were the better team. We had more energy in our game, character and spirit. That’s why the crowd applauded at the end. Let’s take this forward

[The 41-year-old had no arguments about the decision to disallow his side’s goal, though he admits that it had an effect on his team’s confidence] I like to think we might get a couple in our favour, but you can see Mason is a tiny bit offside. We have to get on with it. It is a sad thing for the celebration and the moment but if we are looking for correct decisions that is where we are at. It changes the atmosphere in the crowd, on the pitch. We are slightly deflated and they get a boost. We deserved to be level at that point. No home wins we want to change and I believe we will if we play like that. The reality is younger players have come into the team. We lost two number nines we had last year and we can’t change that

People say the [transfer] ban is a bad thing for Chelsea and in the short term, of course, but in the long term if we can have a vision, with the likes of Tomori, Mason, Tammy, then hopefully it will be really good for us. But in the short term there might be occasions with things like today happen.

2019 09 22b Retrieve

[Following Chelsea’s 2-1 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday, though, Lampard insisted that Christian Pulisic would get his chances at Stamford Bridge] I have a squad to pick from, he played before that in a few games. Willian has come back and looked sharp and good. I decided to go with Mason today. We needed to stay strong and play Mason high up the pitch. That’s my choices to make. [Pulisic] will get ample opportunities. He is a young player as well. Everyone talks about Mason, Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori but he is young and younger than some of them so his chances will come

It is not the case [that he hasn’t settled in]. There’s Pedro, Ross Barkley and Michy Batshuayi on the bench. Batshuayi deserves more minutes from the way he is training, those are unfortunate choices I have to make

2019 09 23 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has said Chelsea must aspire to be like Liverpool following their 2-1 loss to the Premier League leaders] It’s definitely a concern and we want to win at home. Against Liverpool you know can lose, they are a strong team and that can happen and I expect the home win to come soon. The difference between us and Liverpool, as we have shown clearly today that we can compete with them, is that we aren’t consistently as good as them and Manchester City week in, week out - and a lot of teams can say the same. To work towards those levels is hard. It’s a daily, daily thing and that’s where we need to go now. The home win will come, hopefully it comes very soon and it will bring confidence to everybody, but we need to aspire to a level like Liverpool - when they probably don’t play their best but they win the game

[Only bottom-of-the-table Watford and Norwich City have conceded more goals than Chelsea’s 13 this term] We need to work, we need to look at it in training. Set pieces are a different animal to other types of goals. I will always look at the team in every element of goals, and there are times when we have not defended well as a team when we have conceded, and there are times when with a set piece we work on all week and then we switch off in the game. So we have to work consistently to do that because it is very hard to replicate exact moments in a game but we have to do that in training. Our clean sheet will come for us and its obviously important, because we can’t out-score everybody every week, particularly teams like Liverpool

2019 09 23b Retrieve

[Chelsea lost their second straight contest on Sunday, falling at home to Liverpool 2-1. And for the third straight game, Christian Pulisic did not make his way off the bench for the Blues] I have a squad to pick from, he played before that in a few games. Willian has come back and looked sharp and good. I decided to go with Mason today. We needed to stay strong and play Mason high up the pitch. That’s my choices to make. [Pulisic] will get ample opportunities. He is a young player as well. Everyone talks about Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori but he is young and younger than some of them so his chances will come

2019 09 24 Retrieve

[Chelsea are preparing to tie down Tino Anjorin to a new contract as Frank Lampard looks likely to include him in his matchday squad to face Grimsby Town in the Carabao Cup] They have to show they deserve to be in front of other players. At the moment, it’s nice because they are showing that. They are all coming together. We have got Callum and Reece James playing in the Under-23s tomorrow [September 21]. We have a game in the week that they can certainly play a part in for the Carabao Cup. So they have been out. Ruben we know more about as he is a little bit older. He has always been searching for more games which he was starting to get before he got injured. I think we have that right in front of us and hopefully there will be more beneath that. Billy Gilmour and Conor Gallagher, who is doing brilliantly on loan at Charlton, and others, I don’t want to leave others out. The door is open but they have to go through it

2019 09 24b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard had mixed news on the injury front as Andreas Christensen and Emerson Palmieri are set to miss Chelsea’s Carabao Cup match against Grimsby Town on Wednesday] Andreas is not too severe. Hopefully he won’t be out for too long but I can’t give a time frame. Emerson now won’t be back until the other side of the (mid-October) international break. It will be a few weeks because it is the recurrence of an injury, so we have to be a bit careful with it

[The duo played in the last two Chelsea Under-23 matches in preparation for their return to senior action. The match will be a debut for James after a successful spell on loan at Wigan Athletic and Lampard is keen to add his versatility] He can play in different positions. His favourite is position is right-back or right wing-back and he played there a lot in our successful youth teams. He can also play in holding midfield as he showed at Wigan. He is strong, has really good quality on the ball in terms of the delivery he can put in from the sides. He is good in the tackle as he is a powerful boy. I was really impressed with him as a young player before he went to Wigan and also from how he responded to the Championship, so it up to him now to try to make an impact on the squad here

2019 09 25 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has said that Callum Hudson-Odoi needs to learn more after the winger made his return from injury on Wednesday] In terms of his performance, I wasn’t so sure about the first half. I thought him and Christian [Pulisic] as wingers, the message was to hurt the line and run behind and get into the box to take people on. It wasn’t happening and that message didn’t get across. It was reinforced pretty strongly and in the second half [Hudson-Odoi] managed to get into better positions. Callum’s talent means that he absolutely works hard to run behind people, to get at people, to be inside, be outside and work off the ball, all those things. He needs to learn because if he wants to play week in and week out that is what he is going to have to do

[Reece James, who starred on loan at Wigan last season, produced an impressive display at right-back, including a stunning long-range goal and two assists] I think he can get much better because he has been out for a long time and sort of played minimal minutes in the [Under] 23s. Reece James’s performance last year at Wigan, and he was in Team of the Year in the Championship, shows the talent he has got. I think he is going to be a big player for this club, he has got a great player and person to look up to in [Cesar] Azpilicueta, who is in his position and as he improves and works hard, which he will do, he showed his real qualities on the ball today

2019 09 26 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard ready for Man Utd test] It’s a big draw, two big teams and I’m pleased we’re at home. We’ll see. I think a lot can happen in football in a short time. The next round is not coming tomorrow. We have to respect the fact they have good players. They beat us 4-0… so I’m certainly not going to stand here and talk Man Utd down. It’s going to be a tough game, and the beauty of what we did on Wednesday night was make the game look pretty easy. But these games can be tough and I’d rather, from a distance and having not watched the game, give Rochdale credit for taking them all the way. Man Utd will bring a strong team here

[Lampard, who has shown that he is willing to place considerable faith in youngsters this season, added] I’m pleased some players who have not been playing so many minutes played, there were some debuts, and the young lads who came on improved the team, which was nice

2019 09 27 Retrieve

[Lampard is modest about his role in giving youth a chance but he has undeniably created a sense of harmony at Chelsea] I think it is important that the club is joined up. It doesn’t mean that young players are going to start every week, but there must be a connection. Given the academy coaches work for hours and hours with these young players, it is nice for them to see them play for the first team

2019 09 27b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Christian Pulisic has shown good moments during a testing start to life at Chelsea] I have got four wingers now that they are all fit. It’s normal to have an adaptation. He has shown some good moments. We must give him a bit of time to adapt because of youth, change of league and living. They are all different, have different pathways. We know he has played in the Champions League

I think the fact we are seeing a great number of them on the pitch speaks for itself. As a group yes, there is a lot of work ahead of them. The step into the first team is the easier one, now it’s about staying in it. They all seemed very comfortable [against Grimsby]. It was a different game to a Premier League game, but they are confident lads. They have every grounding and base needed

[Pressed for a fitness update] Antonio Rudiger, out. Toni has got a recurring injury in the groin, he still has some pain. Andreas Christensen, should be okay. A bit of pain but not a risk. Olivier Giroud, yes he is over his illness. It left him pretty weak and he has got some strength. Emerson, other side of international break with hamstring. Ruben Loftus-Cheek, no date but he is jogging outside

2019 09 27c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard said that Leeds United winning a FIFA Best Award for Fair Play was ironic] I think everyone had the same reaction because a lot of news was put to Spygate and I think quite rightly so. It got dealt with in the right way so when you go and give an award for fair play in the same year, then I don’t think it’s right, to be straight. I did smile. I don’t know who votes for it. Who votes for it? Listen, everyone knows what happened with Spygate is well documented. The rules changed slightly because of it and they were fined. I felt it was improper. I don’t have to say that anymore. To get a fair play award off the back of that, I thought it was irony at first. It seemed strange to me. The moment to me it was a dead rubber versus Villa. The ball slowed down to the point of the ball going out it was quite right they allowed Villa to score. Quite right to level out the balance of what had happened. That was that. It was a strange decision for them to win that

I don’t want to just extend the honeymoon period on passion and desire, I want to win games. Everyone knows how I feel about this club, working at Derby last year, I think it is a responsibility as a manager to try and connect the club, the fans behind the scenes and show that and understand that.

I bump into them all the time. I live five minutes away. It’s hard not to. I’ve had the same feeling. It’s nice but I don’t want too much sympathy when I don’t win a game. At the end of the day, I get back to work. But it’s nice to see that and feel it. Cabbies, people when I walk the dog; people are being very supportive about what we’re trying to do. Again I want to repay that. It’s a bit of a process but I want to repay it quickly. A lot of the fans see that it may take a little bit of time which is really pleasing. Here we have work like want it tomorrow. The realities will remain the same and I don’t expect lots of credit because I played for the club for so long or because of what we won in an era gone by. It will be taken away from me slightly and taken to the players as it should be in how they perform; it was only their input. My job is to drive that

2019 09 28 Retrieve

[Lampard: Hudson-Odoi can become the ‘absolute best’ if he follows Sterling’s lead] I know Callum’s talent and he has got huge talent. Hence why the club were so keen to get him signed up [to a new contract] and we’re all delighted with that as a club. But there’s a lot of work for Callum to do. Lots of work. I think you can look around and look at fantastic examples and not even at this club. I don’t like to talk about other club’s players but Raheem Sterling is an incredible example of a player with great talent whose work ethic added to that talent and [showed] improvement in a short period of time through absolute dedication [to become] a complete player that we are all wowed by.

[Sterling] is exactly the great model for Callum, because he has those talents. I want him to be the best, the absolute best, because he has the potential to do that and a lot of that or some of that is some hard truths and I saw some hard truths in the game the other day and ways that he can improve and he needs to listen to them and he will. And then he can be that player for us, which is great news for everybody

[Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and Reece James are just a few youngsters aiming to make their mark this season, and Lampard is enjoying developing his group of young talent] To be honest, that’s the really interesting part of my job and I love that side of it. If you just isolate the young players for a moment because we’re talking about them, to judge the moments where you think maybe they are a little bit tired, maybe that game was a lot, maybe did they understand the information I gave them in training? Or in the game? Or in the reviewing of a game, things they did in a game? They’ve all got different personalities. Some need cajoling, some definitely need some tough words at times to help them improve and that’s where my job is really interesting because I love seeing improvement and progression and with these players.

No matter what their personalities, they all want to be the best player they can be for Chelsea, which I love. And it’s not just me. It’s also (assistants) Jody (Morris) and Joe Edwards because they know them so well as well. Within our team, we can easily split up the work and pay attention to all those moments because some of them are emotional things as well. It’s not always the technical on-pitch stuff. Some of it is them growing up and signing a new contract or what’s going on around them or getting a load of exposure after a good performance and what will that do to them? I think that is constant work but in a good way

2019 09 28b Retrieve

[Jorginho is a Lampard player now: Sarri’s son has been reborn at Chelsea] Jorginho is a leader in his personality and whatever happened last year I wasn’t here and for whatever reason people will make judgements. All I can judge is what I see in front of me and from pre-season he has been one of the leaders clearly in the dressing room and on the pitch and he wants to win. That should be the basis and is for everyone but to show it in everything you do is important and he does that so I’m pleased with Jorgy and young players need to look up to that attitude he has daily

2019 09 28c Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard admits to having been left pleasantly surprised by the performance levels of Mason Mount this season] He was brilliant for me at Derby County. I did not expect this level but he is improving daily.

[Lampard used a number of youth team stars during Chelsea’s midweek Carabao Cup win over Grimsby, including Billy Gilmour, and is pleased to see his faith being rewarded] It is great for the club and a long time coming. The work is done in the academy. The mentality is great. They want to play for this club. At the moment they are earning it and setting a level for others. I have complete confidence in the lads. They are there on merit. Whatever game they take it on board and long may it continue

[He is relieved to have ticked that box and to have seen his side keep pace with a number of rivals in the rather congested race for top-four finishes] We needed the win. We haven’t had a 90-minute game where we’ve controlled it enough. The only disappointment is we didn’t have more goals. A clean sheet as well. It is good for the confidence of everyone. We had a lot of shots first half. But weak finishing and a bit of bad luck. You do start to wonder but you have to remain confident it will come and it did

2019 09 28d Retrieve

[Jorginho never looked like missing and is now the go-to man for the Blues] Yes he is, end of story

[The Blues boss was then pressed further on his decision and added] I knew you’d ask me that question again. I’m surprised about the obsession with penalty takers. Jorginho took it and he scored. He’s a penalty taker

[Lampard said of Kante] It’s an awareness, I didn’t want to take a risk. I spoke to N’Golo about it and he’s so important for us. We know that. He’s had a difficult pre-season. It’s been difficult for us but mainly for him because of the break-up of his pre-season, with the injury carrying over from last year. It wasn’t right to risk him. He could have a chance for Lille

2019 09 29 Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea being careful with Kante but Blues will be stronger with him back] My feeling is that he has played a lot and that’s because he has been so successful and so important to the teams he has been in. At the minute, he has injuries. This little niggle he had is a small, small injury. We just need to get it right. We are just careful and it is my duty to work with him. The medical team are working so hard with him. I have been there as a player and, if you miss a pre-season through an injury in particular, then you are playing catch-up. At the moment he is playing catch-up and that’s no fault of his own. He has played four seasons now full-on, game after game with international tournaments. So, it is right to be a bit careful. Let’s be happy. We got a result here, we are doing okay. With N’Golo, when we do get him to where we want him to be, we will be stronger with him

[Following the victory over Brighton, Lampard felt his side’s use of possession, rather than defending, was the key to the improvement he saw on Saturday afternoon] I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves because what we have shown so far this season is moments and patches of games with good stuff where we want to get to, and other moments where we haven’t done so. So I think to get overconfident at this point would be wrong on my part and the team’s part.

I think today was a nice step forward. It is one game but a nice step forward. Some of the football we want to play, moving the ball quickly for most of the game, but I still feel there is a transitional element. With the young players, and some have been making their full debuts for Chelsea this season, we must give them time and we will get better. I think it was the movement of the ball. We are working a lot on trying to keep switching the play and in moving it from side to side. Sometimes we forget that and we forget ourselves that we slow it down too much. It is something I don’t like to see. I don’t think it helps the crowd or the atmosphere when you slow it down and go back to the goalkeeper and across sideways when you can play forward.

At times when we were at our best, we play forward, we played punchier, we were sharper and that’s what made us create so many chances. I was pleased and that’s why I wanted to be really positive at half-time because it is easy to lose patience or to stop doing the right things because it is not coming off. We were actually creating. The point was to keep doing the right things, to keep moving it quickly and believe it was going to come and it did. Every game is different, you have to consider that, but at our best I want us to have a feeling that we are a team that I like watching myself - a team that are sharp and have energy because we have that quality. It is about trying to put that all together

[Lampard is keen to see his young squad adapt quickly to the level of Europe’s elite competition after the likes of Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori made their Champions League debut against Valencia] Yes, for some it will be their first taste for that stuff and they will have to learn very quickly because I agree that anywhere in Europe away in the Champions League is tough. There is a mindset to it, there is an approach to it. Concentration levels have to be maximum. We showed that against Valencia where we were the better team but switched off for a second and lost the game. We need to learn those lessons fast, plus we have experienced players in the team that need to help the young players on that front too

2019 10 01 Retrieve

[Tough love! How Chelsea & Lampard are helping Callum Hudson-Odoi realise his world-class potential] Now that a five-year contract is signed, this is where the hard work really starts for him. I made it clear I wanted him at the club because I believe in his talent. I think there is a lot more to come. And it’s only pure hard work that will get him there

[Hudson-Odoi was making his first appearance for the senior squad since suffering an Achilles injury in April and he marked the occasion with a goal in a 7-1 win] Firstly he has signed up, so that is good, as that puts to bed everything else. But, in terms of his performance, I thought, ‘First half, not so sure’. The message to him and Christian [Pulisic] was to attack the defensive line, run in behind and get into the box to take people on. It wasn’t happening; that message didn’t get across. It was reinforced pretty strongly at half-time and, in the second half, Callum managed to get into better positions. Callum’s talent means that he absolutely has to work hard, to run behind people, to get at people, to be inside, be outside and work off the ball – all those things. That’s where he needs to learn because if he wants to play every week, that is what he is going to have to do

2019 10 01b Retrieve

[Lampard accuses Ross Barkley of being ‘naive’ after late-night taxi row] He is travelling with the squad. In terms of permission from Ross [to go out on Sunday], I don’t expect to be asked for that. To address the issue, he hasn’t breached a club code – the lads were given a day off. He hasn’t committed a crime, but I think he has been naive to be out before a Champions League game. He has admitted that. I like Ross, I have had no problem with him and he has admitted he made a mistake. I will take that at face value and move on

[Lampard insisted he is not concerned about his youngsters being embroiled in off-field incidents] It is my responsibility to tell them about their responsibilities. I do it constantly, as do the staff in the academy. They live in a modern day. I don’t understand why, but people pick up their phone and video what happens. We have a very good bunch, good lads. I made mistakes as a player. I have confidence in them and they have to take on responsibilities on the pitch

[N’Golo Kante missed Chelsea’s 2-0 loss against Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday due to a hamstring complaint] He got through [Tuesday’s session] okay. It’s one that we have to assess. We are positive. It doesn’t relate to his injury from the Europa League final. The fallout of that meant he has had a broken pre-season. He has had a few niggles, some bad luck. Everyone is working to getting him fit

2019 10 02 Retrieve

[Lampard describe his Chelsea team’s performance] We have to be honest, I thought Valencia wasn’t the worst game for us. We played okay and should have got a result. It was a harsh lesson in switching off for a second and losing a match at this level. I think that idea ramps up even more when you travel in the Champions League and play away from home at stadiums like this against top European teams. Lille have a lot of threats to us, particularly in attacking areas where they have a lot of speed and quality. But as we sit here now with no points from the first game, it’s a game we have to be very ready for to try and pick up something. The players will be very aware of that. We can hopefully bring the confidence of the last two results we’ve had, two really solid wins, into tomorrow night. We have to trust that if we play at our best then we’ll get the result we want

2019 10 02 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard was happy to see his side bounce back from a difficult defeat to Valencia] It feels really good. This was a really hard place to come, added to the pressure of not beating Valencia. And it was the first time for a few travelling in Europe

Fikayo Tomori was outstanding again. He has to keep on with that. Now Ajax have set their stall out in the group. This gives us confidence and points. Now the hard work begins

2019 10 03 Retrieve

[The Blues boss said after seeing his leading man find the target again in a 2-1 Champions League victory over Lille] I understand but in this moment we have Tammy Abraham who scored tonight and has scored a lot of goals in the Premier League. I need all the options for the season and Oli is a fantastic professional and I think he understands. Everybody wants to play, I like that, that’s how it has to be. He will have chances, we need Oli, we will need him a lot through the season. And he’s very, very good in the dressing room behind the scenes, and that’s great for me

2019 10 04 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits that Fikayo Tomori has been his pet project but he says that his consistency has helped keep him in the Chelsea team after being on the fringes in pre-season] He was quiet at Derby. He was quite quiet with me – he wasn’t quiet when they were all together. From a distance. He has definitely got personality. And that group last year, the group he was in at Derby, he became very popular in the dressing room and popular with the fans because of his performances.

He was Player of the Year. The progression was huge but the main thing I saw in him was work ethic. He quietly goes about his business. He trains hard, everything you ask him to do he tries to do and more. Physically he is great – we know that. But he is one of those when you are doing sprinting or running or some heavy running early season, which we were doing, you could see every day he is nailed on. He does the job. When you want to do a particular training session, something quite simple but takes focus, he is focussed and ready to go. And I think that has really shown itself in his performances since he stepped into the team. I put trust in him early in the season – I think that was obvious with the way the pre-season went with the centre-backs. At the moment, he has really delivered and long may that continue.

I think there is a lot more to come still. You don’t know until you put players in. Against Sheffield United at home was a game where I thought he deserved his opportunity for his training, how he trained. That is a great message to all the players: how you train will relate to whether you get picked. Those are the rules here. You have to train at a level. And he trained so well for a period of time he deserved it against Sheffield United and then he gave me a big problem because he played so well and he has continued to do that. Yes, he is a project in a way but a nice one because everything you want him to do, he stands up and delivers

[Lampard insisted though that he is just as happy to see young foreign players make it at Chelsea as long as they carry the same love for the club that developed them] Well, there are two things. One, I really like it, yes, an affiliation and the academy, and the fans love it. I do like that side of it. But the other 50 per cent is that I don’t care where they come from as long as they play and apply and do the right things, it doesn’t matter whether you’re an English 20-year-old or a French 20-year-old, etc. I think if the ethics are right and you deserve your place in the team, you’ll get your place in the team. But yes, it’s obviously a nice story because fans really do enjoy seeing the young English boys coming through and they all have an affiliation with the club. But then if you look below then slightly, you have Ian Maatsen who is a young Dutch boy, a really good young player. If he comes through I would feel exactly the same so it’s nice to see

2019 10 05 Retrieve

[Lampard urges calm about Christian Pulisic’s lack of Chelsea appearances] He’s level. I spoke to him two days before the Grimsby game and was very clear about the standards and we have to give him the fact that he’s moved country and moved leagues. He’s as young as all the young players we keep talking about. He’s just turned 21. So I think if anyone is getting too excited about this they should calm down because he’s started five games for us and what he needs to do is work, work daily, work to show within the group that he deserves to play.

As they all do, as all the players do. That’s what the focus on everyone is. This is one of my difficult problems in this job. I have good players and everyone has a story. Christian Pulisic has a price tag. Ross Barkley is an international player. Mason Mount is an international player, Callum Hudson-Odoi just signed a new contract, Bayern Munich wanted to buy him last summer. He’s an international player. Ruben Loftus-Cheek will come back and be an international player. I can’t pick them all and be in the game unfortunately. All I have to demand of them is that they show me in training and show me that they are worthy of the place.

We can all focus on Pulisic from the other day but Callum’s the same and I have to speak in the real world when I speak to them and sometimes as a manager you want more. You have to be honest and the players have to react to that and Callum has now come on with two assists in the games that he’s come on and that’s what you want to keep pushing. I love the young players. I particularly love the young players because I want them to improve daily. At the same time, sometimes I have to make harsh decisions and say something that I see can help their game but might not sound that nice because I want them to be the best, all of them. That’s what I want them to be. That’s part of the process

[Lampard said of Giroud] My relationship is really good with him. He’s a great professional, trains at a level every day, great in the dressing room and in the game, he passes on experience. But in terms of that, everybody keeps asking me about the players that aren’t playing but it’s a difficult one because some players can’t play whether they’re 32 or at the other end of the spectrum at 21. They have to keep working and be positive within the group because I’ve got no winners in this game, I want the club to win. So when I choose to select people or not it’s because I think it’s the best thing. I’m not blind to the fact when you’re not playing, it’s not nice.

Everyone wants to play. I understand that and accept that. I was one of the worst. I hated not playing. I was terrible. So on this side of the fence I get it, I get it, but all I want to see is positivity, how they are daily in the place and I see that. I see that and that’s sometimes the thing people in the outside world doesn’t see - why is he not playing? This one or that one. I’ve got to make choices in training and I want the group to be positive and well spirited and getting results, and at the moment we are doing that and it has to continue, because like all good teams, we need a big squad in these modern days to try and be a successful team and it will need everyone pulling through the season in the same direction whether playing or not.

To be fair to Oli, he’s been fantastic training and we’ll need him. Tammy has scored a lot of goals, scoring regularly, which is great for us. But Tammy needs to know that if his level drops you’ve got Giroud and (Michy) Batshuayi training well and trying to get into the first team. That’s the competitive nature of the squad, that’s what we’ve got and what we want

2019 10 06 Retrieve

[Lampard only had glowing praise for his youngsters and Tammy Abraham especially, with the attacker earning a call-up to Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad] Very happy. I think it is well deserved, scoring goals regularly for us and everybody knows that his form is very good. I think he has been in the equation for Gareth all season with the way that he has played. It is a natural progression for him. So I’m delighted. He is a proud lad, as he should be, proud to get a call up

[On whether or not he felt Abraham was capable of scoring on international level] Yes I do. I don’t want to put too much on his shoulders, but step by step he has shown that he can score goals in the Championship twice, now in the Premier League. The work has only begun for him because he is a young player. I want to see him continue in the same vein for Chelsea and to keep scoring goals. Naturally when he goes to the England squad he has the attributes to go there and be successful. It is another step for him but I am sure that he has the attitude to take that challenge of being a goalscorer for England

2019 10 06b Retrieve

[Willian is setting the example that the other wingers in Chelsea’s squad have to follow. Certainly, Pulisic can learn a lot from the Selecao star] Willian was the stand out one today. His work ethic when he was off the ball was almost like … if you talk to wingers and tell them what you want from them, we could show them that video of Willian today. His quality and bursts of pace on the ball, he has been our best player in the last 12 games. And it’s a great thing to say when you have players on the pitch like that around them

2019 10 06b Retrieve

[Willian may not have found the target as Chelsea beat Southampton 4-1, but has been billed as a leader and immense] I didn’t think we started that well, even though doing so had been something we’d talked about before. The goal came at the right time and after that I felt pretty comfortable. Getting four away from home - we’re scoring - so it’s a nice afternoon. Tammy’s performance was great, his all-round performance and his work off the ball. But I must say I thought Willian was immense - he is an example in what he was doing on and off the ball. He’s a leader - not one that shouts - but in how he performs. Let’s not get carried away, it’s a long season and we feel we might have picked up more points than we’ve actually got. We’ve not been at our absolute best and we can be a lot better. We shouldn’t be sloppy, at 2-0 we should go 3-0. We’re scoring goals, great, but can we tighten up? Yes

[The Chelsea boss added on Callum Hudson-Odoi’s first Premier League start of the season] I liked a lot of the stuff he did, there’s competition in those wide areas now. I thought it was a really good performance, really bright stuff, I’m disappointed he didn’t get his goal

2019 10 06c Retrieve

[Lampard is adamant that everyone in his squad will have an important role to play across a testing campaign] I get asked weekly ‘why is he not in the squad?’ and ‘why is he on the bench?’ when it comes to certain players. We need all of the players. You need the contribution of Michy coming on and getting his goal. He’s been training really well. Christian Pulisic coming on with a great assist for the goal. Those players, absolutely we need them as the games come thick and fast. At the moment we are going well and keeping a similar core of the team. But we are going to need everyone and that means training at a level and being happy as a complete group when we come away and get a result like this

2019 10 07 Retrieve

[Lampard paid tribute to Tammy Abraham in the wake of his latest goalscoring contribution in a 4-1 win at Southampton on Sunday] You talk about when people are in good form, things happen for them or they generally have moments. For me, that comes from how Tammy has handled himself all season from the early moments of pre-season and the start of the season when people were questioning him in different ways. It’s the work ethic behind the scenes that gets him in such good nick. He’s not just an incredible handful for defenders - he’s running them, he’s holding the ball up, he’s controlling it, he’s got good feet - he’s also getting his goals, which is brilliant for him.

I trusted in Tammy at the start of the season. I felt it was his time to come back to Chelsea. I know people will talk about the circumstances [of the transfer ban], but he also has Olivier Giroud, who’s a World Cup winner, and also [Michy] Batshuayi who’s a top-class Premier League striker in my opinion as well. He’s made the position his own in the short-term now. He has to keep that going because competition is key and over the course of the season we’ll need everybody. But he has deserved the great week he has had. He has deserved the great start to the season he has had and I will keep on him, because I want more

[The Chelsea ace was substituted late on against the Saints after suffering a knock, but Lampard went on to allay any fears over his fitness heading into the international break] He’s fine. He took a bang on the back of the knee, but I think he wanted a round of applause

2019 10 09 Retrieve

[Later that month, Abraham’s team-mate Kurt Zouma was also the victim of online abuse after scoring an own goal against Sheffield United. Chelsea manager Frank Lampard called on social media companies to act following those incidents] We have to look at social media and the platforms and give them some accountability, to actually have people registered who can be chased down for it

2019 10 12 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard’s appointment as Chelsea manager came as a surprise to former team-mate John Obi Mikel, with John Terry expected to be first into a coaching post at Stamford Bridge] I am very happy for Frank. When we were playing at Chelsea we were expecting that John Terry and he would be very good managers. But we were expecting Terry to reach that level first. Lampard made a big step. I hope he will be successful at Chelsea for many more years. I also want to see John Terry in similar jobs in the future because he was our leader on the pitch

[The 32-year-old midfielder, who is currently with Trabzonspor] His arrival at Chelsea means the club are caring for their legends. I joked with him after the Chelsea move: I want to be his assistant when I retire

2019 10 17 Retrieve

[Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard is against the idea of increasing the number of Champions League group matches as he fears it could lead to player burnout] At the minute, I think the level is about right. The competition is good. I like the format personally. If you ask me can we play more European games, I personally don’t know where you’d fit them in amongst our busy schedule.

I always find it hard with the players to keep the quality level and the freshness within the team, so I think if we did do that there would be a lot of discussion about how that worked practically. As a manager, I actually feel the weight of games more than I did as a player, even though I was running around as a player. You’re thinking about how can you keep the team fresh, and it’s a challenge with all the competitions we have now

[Asked if scrapping the Carabao Cup to make room for more European fixtures is a possible solution] I have a soft spot for the League Cup because I won it a couple of times at Chelsea [as a player]. It was the first competition I ever won. Domestically it gives teams a feeling you can compete on a level in a cup at home, which is important

2019 10 17b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard explain why Ngolo Kante cant become holding midfielder] This idea that he wins the ball probably as well as anybody in world football doesn’t mean that he has to sit in front of the back four and do that. He also has too much in his game to drive forward with the ball, to lead midfield areas and win the ball back high up the pitch. That’s what I want to give him the freedom to do [a license to win the back higher up the field]

2019 10 18 Retrieve

[Lampard accepts Mourinho’s Chelsea criticism, saying: It’s all good] With Jose, we would have texts from time to time. We had some at the start of the season around the Manchester United game, where he’d had a little go at us (Mourinho was a pundit for Sky Sports for that game), but it’s all good. I’ve sat in the punditry chair for a year so I understand the need to say things so I’m not going to bang on too much. In terms of him, we have a relationship.

Harry Redknapp is Uncle Harry so it would sound wrong if I didn’t speak to him but he was great for me in getting me the role at Derby. He was close to Mel Morris. He followed us brilliantly last year. He would text me and call me to talk about Derby and is doing the same at Chelsea so I have to shout Harry even though he is family. What he did for me in terms of getting me on the ladder managerially is huge and I will always be thankful for that. I had really good relationships with my managers but sometimes in football, Guus Hiddink actually sent me some great messages, you move on a bit and it doesn’t become like you were more acquaintances but I have huge respect for all of them

[Lampard is pleased to see his philosophy paying off, but acknowledges that he still has a long way to go] I feel like we are moving in the right direction but I always get nervous saying it because it is a catalyst for overconfidence. The last month was good and we had some good results. The international break always worries you slightly because will we forget the good things we were doing that made us get good results and we can’t forget the fact we can do much more and we need to believe in ourselves that we can do much more. There’s a lot of work to be done and I don’t know what success looks like at the moment. It’s competitive at the top of the league and I don’t think the league has given itself and real form yet other than Liverpool who are deservedly right up there and City but the rest of us are trying to bridge that gap

2019 10 18b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has been left frustrated with the management of the France national side after seeing [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) returned to Chelsea nursing another knock] No, N’Golo is not fit. A small groin issue with France, he isn’t fit for Saturday. Mateo Kovacic had a knock on his thigh, but in contention. Ross Barkley is fine. Andreas Christensen has a hamstring problem which is going to see him out for two weeks. Antonio Rudiger is outside training, a bit of work to be done for match fitness. But a positive that he is outside

[Lampard added when pressed further on Kante] We all have our selection problems, but the Kante one was not a laughing matter. We communicated before the first international break. It was clear that he wasn’t fit to play the second game and he sat on the bench. I think it could have been handled better. I understand that when a player is on international duty that they are their players, but it was clear that he wasn’t fit

[The hope being that a break has not come at the worst possible time] Hopefully not. We were playing well and we have to hope that we don’t have short memories and that we can get straight back to that

[He went on to say of a meeting with Steve Bruce’s Newcastle] It would be easy to look at us as favourites, it would be a casual mistake for us to make that a story. We have to control what we can control, can we create chances and to make sure that we are at our best

2019 10 19 Retrieve

[Hot topic Christian Pulisic pleases Lampard as Chelsea hit Premier League’s top four] I’m really pleased for Christian Pulisic. He’s a hot topic because of the price tag, because of his status in his national team and his world status through that. And everyone has got a little bit carried away with the short term. The long term is that he’s come here and he’s just turned 21 and to see him play like he did today, and there’s a lot more to come. It’s not the end story. You can see his balance and awareness and you can see how he can play. And there’s improvement to come as with all the young players, but delighted for him because he will feel good about that. And he should do because he was a big part of us winning that game

Delighted. If there was a worry it was that the international break might have cut out momentum and we’d forget the good thing we were doing to get those results. But particularly in the second half you saw a spirit and energy in the team. Every game now we need to go back to basics and keep trying to pick up those wins, because it’s a tough league when you see the results around you realise how tough it is. You take nothing for granted. Today it was tough, we had a bit of a problem and we solved it with the way we played in the second half

[Lampard insists he will not be getting carried away in an ongoing effort to secure Champions League qualification] It is good. You get asked for your aims, we know we want to be challenging in the top four, and from a slightly difficult start it is a good sign that we are moving in the right direction. In all senses. Performance, results. All that must do is be an incentive for us. Football can change in an instant. Our arrival into the top four must only give us the hunger to stay there and move on

[Lampard said of the England international] Ross Barkley turned his ankle. It looks a bit nasty at first glance, but the doctor wants to have a look at tomorrow. I have no more on that

2019 10 20 Retrieve

[Lampard says Giroud is right to consider a January move but wants to convince striker to stay at Chelsea] No, [we want him to stay] because at the minute, he is a big part of the squad. As I say, Tammy has been producing but I would sit down with him (Giroud) because I respect him. But no, I want him here. I have had a good chat with Oli before he went away. I always respect all the players, particularly of his age. I was in that sort of low-30s age. I love his professionalism. He was bang on when he spoke to me. He was bang on with his quotes when he was away with France. He shouldn’t be happy and accept not playing. That’s what good players do. As I said to Oli, he will get his games and be a big influence for us. At the moment, because of how Tammy is playing at the moment, there haven’t been as many minutes. So, that will be something I will sit down happily with Oli in January but January is quite a long way away

Tammy Abraham has been scoring goals regularly but today was not quite the norm. What you do see with Tammy is what you get - physicality and movement. To keep trying and be a problem for the defenders. I have got nice problems up front. We have got Giroud and Batshuayi. I have to give them both credit because they are showing great professionalism. They are training at a level. They will get their chances as well because it is a long season.

At the moment, Tammy, with his regular goals, has been a big part of getting us to where we have got to at the minute. He has been playing. I think he can [get even better]. He is a sponge. He wants to listen. He wants to get better. He wants to improve his game. He wants to score more goals. He wants to help his team-mates. And so he has got a beautiful base of that in terms of coaching. So I think he has that. His goals and performances will show what he can do at this level. Hopefully, we can move him up the levels even more

2019 10 20b Retrieve

[Lampard is expecting a stern test in the upcoming double-header against FC Ajax, but is looking forward to the challenge with his young squad] Yes, yes it is [a tight group]. We got a good result in Lille which changes the face of it slightly. Now, these two games against Ajax are really big. They have been such a strong team, they’ve got points on the board and they will give us a problem. In terms of the atmosphere in the stadium, they are going to be strong. The movement and the way they play football is going to be a big test for us. We go there relatively confident so let’s take on the challenge.

I think everything is an education in football. Today we were trying to break down a team with 10 men behind the ball a lot of the time. Lille was a big education for Champions League debuts for Tammy, Mason Mount, Fikayo Tomori and Reece James. Another one with Ajax who are a top-level team who have managed to get to the semi-finals. They have good players who play a certain way. Off the ball, you have to be fully concentrated. In terms of what they can do to you, how they play, so yes, it is a big challenge

2019 10 22 Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea have a long way to go to match Ajax youth academy] We’ve got a long way to go to claim the similarities, but I think pride in the short term, yes. We shouldn’t get carried away with ourselves, it’s great we have a good feeling at the club in terms of the young players that have come through. I think it’s long-deserved recognition for the academy itself and those players as well, but we are at a place here that is steeped in history of bringing young players through, creating great teams with groups of young players over the years. We have a long way to go to do that. But in the short term, I’m certainly happy and we need to continue working so that they continue their development, the young players

[Lampard hopes to take inspiration from the Eredivisie champions’ achievement by boosting his players’ confidence] I aim to give them confidence because I believe in them. What Ajax did last year was incredible: to get as far as they did with such a young team. With us, I think you see my belief in them because even though everyone says we had a transfer ban and it’s the only option I have, that’s not true. I have lots of options in the squad and I make the options on the players I feel should play. The young players have shown it and I believe in them. That’s a good thing. But we mustn’t get carried away with thinking that’s the end of the story. It’s a nice story until now but success in the longer term is what we have to work for. I keep saying it is just the beginning of the road but I feel like by having belief in them, they can feel that back, which is good. I also need to be strong in driving them to get better all the time

2019 10 23 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard was forced to deny claims that he is scared of Ajax in an extraordinary exchange with a reporter during a press conference ahead of Wednesday’s game] That’s just my face.

[When pressed on why he had been speaking about Ajax so much in the aftermath of Saturday’s win over Newcastle] When we’re finished with Ajax it will all be about Burnley!

[Lampard did eventually go on to further hail his side’s next opponents] I respect the team, on a serious note. We saw the way this team played last year, and I know that the team has changed slightly, I am very aware of the new threats of the team and anywhere to travel in the Champions League is a difficult match. They have won two games in the group convincingly, but it is definitely not a fact of being scared of Ajax. We have confidence in ourselves. We know that it is a tough match. The reason I spoke after Newcastle is because that was a game in the Premier League where they played a very low block. 5-4-1, very difficult to break down, which we managed to do. Ajax is completely different, so it was really important that we flipped a switch the minute that Newcastle finished because tomorrow [Wednesday] is a tough match.

2019 10 23b Retrieve

[Lampard can perfectly understand why Giroud is considering a January transfer] I have had a good chat with Oli before he went away. I always respect all the players, particularly of his age. I was in that sort of low-30s age. I love his professionalism. He was bang on when he spoke to me. He was bang on with his quotes when he was away with France. He shouldn’t be happy and accept not playing. That’s what good players do. As I said to Oli, he will get his games and be a big influence for us. At the moment, because of how Tammy is playing at the moment, there haven’t been as many minutes. So, that will be something I will happily sit down and discuss with Oli in January. But January is quite a long way away

2019 10 23c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes Michy Batshuayi’s match-winning moment in Chelsea’s 1-0 triumph at Ajax was just reward for the patience he has shown this season] The fact Christian Pulisic comes on in the last two games and gets two assists, changes games, I thought his performance was outstanding for 25 minutes or whatever it was. And Michy, the great thing about the strikers I’ve got is that, even though Tammy has been scoring for me, the other two stayed patient, worked hard, supported the group and they’ve got talent. So, it was a choice to bring Michy on because of how mobile he can be and he’s waited for his moment and he fully deserved his moment there

[There were a couple of near misses for the Blues, with Quincy Promes having a goal ruled out for a narrow offside call and Edson Alvarez seeing a header hit the post] It was our mistake [that led to Ajax’s offside goal] and that’s why the Champions League is what it is, that’s why it’s the ultimate because, in a tiny second, if you switch off, it can go against you. But we deserved our luck, I think. I’m a big believer in that, in how you prepare what you’re doing with the input out there, you deserve that little break.

We haven’t had many VAR breaks this season anyway so I suppose it might have been coming, you make your own luck on that one and the one that hits the post. But I thought, for such a creative side that they are, we didn’t have Kepa [Arrizabalaga] under many problems and we did have a lot of moments for us in the box where, had we been better, we could have scored more

2019 10 24 Retrieve

[Batshuayi replaced Tammy Abraham with Chelsea in need of attacking inspiration and Chelsea boss Frank Lampard was delighted to see his replacements] The fact Christian Pulisic comes on in the last two games and gets two assists, changes games, I thought his performance was outstanding for 25 minutes or whatever it was. And Michy, the great thing about the strikers I’ve got is that, even though Tammy has been scoring for me, the other two stayed patient, worked hard, supported the group and they’ve got talent. So, it was a choice to bring Michy on because of how mobile he can be and he’s waited for his moment and he fully deserved his moment there

2019 10 24b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard hails Christian Pulisic as Chelsea’s ‘babies’ come of age] Sometimes the toughest part of management is leaving out players that really want to play week in, week out. You rely on them being positive and coming on to make an impact. You have to give Christian huge credit because he looked so lively and the assist is just as important as the finish

I’ve tried to shut my ears to a lot of the outside talk … I understand his quality, his young age and the fact that it’s a big move for him. He wants to know what I want from him, what the Premier League is like and that’s not always an easy ride but we’ve stayed calm and kept looking at the big picture

[Lampard said the result, which left Chelsea with six points after three games in Group H, had set the benchmark for his youthful side] It feels huge. That always scares me because there’s a lot to do and it’s just six points halfway through the group now, but we’re entitled to be excited. It can be a bit of a blueprint for us in terms of the work from the midfield players which was outstanding … but there’s no excuses for us now to dip from that. The younger players are still babies in Champions League minutes, so this was a huge test … but the balance of our team between young players […] and experienced players who they rely on to set examples was good

2019 10 25 Retrieve

[Blues boss Frank Lampard has said when quizzed on contract talks] I have got no news on the Willian contract. That’s a conversation between Willy, his representatives and the club. Everyone can see I’m happy with Willy on the pitch

2019 10 25b Retrieve

[Lampard hoping for Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori deals as Chelsea discuss fresh terms] Of course, I do [want them to stay]. That goes slightly out of my remit when they are dealing with the club. The club know I love the players, I brought them into the team this season. They are doing particularly well but I leave those conversations to the club to discuss contracts but, of course, I want them to be here for a long time. That’s the conversation for me and the club I suppose. I made it clear that they are playing very well and I want them to stay

[He added on the CAS appeal] I don’t know, is the answer. I don’t know if we can. It is not in my hands so I wouldn’t want to speculate if we can or can’t. At the minute we can’t. I am just concentrating on what is ahead of us with the squad we have now. A club like Chelsea, we will always be looking at ‘can we improve the squad?’ If there is the potential to bring players in … At the moment I don’t know the answer

2019 10 25c Retrieve

[No timeframe for Kante’s Chelsea return as Lampard opts for patient approach] N’Golo won’t be ready, he’s training on his own with some physical work because he’s had some physical issues. We need to get him right now because he’s been in and out this season. I just want him fit. He’s played a lot of football for the past four years, he’s had a big injury off the back of last year. Now it’s time to take a small step back and get his fitness up. He had a bad injury, he hadn’t played since April. This is the fall-out of last season’s injury for us. We’ve lost Ruben, we’ve lost Rudi and we’ve lost Kante

[Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi, who in September returned from a serious Achilles injury, have signed new long-term contracts at Stamford Bridge and Lampard would like to see Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori follow suit] Of course I do [want them to stay], but that is out of my remit. The club know I love the players. I brought them into the team this season and they are doing particularly well, but I leave contract situations to the club. They are playing really well and I want them to stay

[Lampard suggested the Blues would be open to improving the squad in January if the sanction is reduced] I don’t know if we can, it’s not in my hands. I wouldn’t want to speculate … we’re just concentrating on what’s ahead of us in terms of the squad we’ve got now. A club like Chelsea will always be looking at improving the squad if there’s a chance of bringing players in, but at the moment I don’t know the answer

2019 10 25d Retrieve

[Lampard: Hudson-Odoi needs to learn from Sterling and Jorginho] The minute I took the job I made contact with Callum because I knew his contract situation and I felt it was a big sign to him that he should stay, absolutely the right decision for him and the club, and the club were trying to make it happen so, as the manager, I got involved there

Since he has come back on the pitch, I’ve been saying, sometimes speaking to the outside world, that he can do better because I feel like he is a player who will react well to those because I only want the best for him. I don’t like to mention other players but I think Raheem Sterling is such a good role model for a young English player in roughly the same position to see the development and for me that is hard work behind the scenes that Raheem has brought into his game in all senses. And I want that from Callum and that starts with what he does day-in, day-out in every bit of training cannot be lost on him. He has to get every ounce out of it and listen to me and listen to the staff. And his teammates because that will drive him as well.

Jorginho plays like that, so it is all good at the minute and I hope his development keeps going at the rate it is. I don’t want to sound like I’m being ultra-firm with him day-in, day-out. I was the first to congratulate him against Newcastle, particularly when he ran back to tackle their full back in the corner with a recovery run. But there are moments with all the younger players when they need to hear the cruel reality of football because it is only being on edge consistently will bring them the big celebratory moments they will get when things all go well

[He insists that he doesn’t play good cop, bad cop with his coaching staff, which includes Jody Morris as his assistant manager, but admits that it is down to him to tell off his players] No it doesn’t work like that and it’s important. I wouldn’t want the players to think that is some form of a double act in that sense. We can both have our moments and Joe Edwards and Chris Jones. We are a very tight-knit bunch and sometimes if you try to be the good cop as a manager consistently I’m not sure that’s the right tone. Sometimes a strong message comes out even if it is not nice to be heard for the group or a player it must come from the manager in my opinion so unfortunately, I have to be bad cop sometimes.

I’ve had a couple of words occasionally but I’m not a manager that is full of rollockings as such. I like to have a message that is pretty clear over a period of time that I try and drive home and certainly if I ever felt there was a lack of effort in training or in-game then that would be the moment that I would go towards that but certainly the players are trying to take on messages in terms of when we are on the ball and stuff.

That is not rollickings that is my job to keep enforcing it until we get it right. I think it depends on the player and the group and if there is a moment where you have to be very firm that might be seen or spoken about as a rollicking I think it should be given but you only do it if you want to get the right result from it so that’s what I mean. Regular rollickings become white noise and not a positive one but if you have found a moment where things were not right and you felt it was relating to the game, i come back to a lack of effort or application you should give that and see what result you get from it.

2019 10 25e Retrieve

[Lampard believes playing time will cure Danny Drinkwater’s problems] In pre-season I worked hard with Drinkwater and I think formed a pretty good relationship. As a manager, I have a duty of care. I get on well with Drinkwater. I like to work with all the players.

He has obviously had a tough time here with his career because he has not played like he wants to play, particularly last season. My idea was to be honest with him up front, where we were, where he was, in terms of selection and pecking order. We want the best for Drinkwater. The decision, in the end, came for him to go to Burnley. Whats happened up there I have not got huge control over, albeit I have made contact with him. And then he has been injured. We want him to go there and do well. Everyone’s approaching it with the right idea trying to do it right and to be fair it’s now up to Drinkwater himself, to really get his head down and train and work hard because he is our player at the end of the day.

I would not get into that [if he has off-field problems] I will focus on the football. The problem, in all honesty, is that he has not played for two years wants to play competitive football and I think it will solve the problems, particularly the ones we see on the pitch

2019 10 26 Retrieve

[Lampard defends Hudson-Odoi as Sean Dyche hits out over diving during Chelsea’s 4-2 win against Burnley] If I feel like it was a dive I would speak to Callum and say that’s not what we’re about. When you’re moving into the box at pace and cutting across defenders, whether VAR decides if it’s a penalty or not is one thing. I thought there was a lot of things going on in the game with people going down under no real contact. Their bench wanted everything that was happening. Ashley Barnes, every time he has a contest in the air he falls to ground to get a free-kick to stick it in the box

2019 10 27 Retrieve

[Lampard: Christian Pulisic showed the full package with Chelsea hat-trick] The way that he’s trained over the past few weeks and the impact he’s had when he’s been playing has said to everyone ‘here I am’ and what talent he does have. I’m really pleased for him today, it’s what we need from all our attacking players - to be a threat, to play like that, to have a ruthless edge about how they finish. He showed the full package today. The first goal, where he waits, then a step over, then moves away from the players. That sort of thing is brilliant and I hope it gives him the confidence that it should do. I’m pretty sure that it will do

I’m absolutely delighted for him. A lot of talk around Christian for the big price tag, for the fact he’s quite rightly a star in his country and plays for the USA so well. From my point of view, I’m delighted to see him do that today because I know the backstory, I know the pressures of a move like that. I also know he played for his country through the summer and had a one-week break this summer. Then you get the pressure of ‘can you settle in the Premier League’ so I’ve tried to deal with it in the way that I see best, which is to give him minutes. He fully deserved his start today and it was a fantastic match-winning performance

2019 10 28 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is delighted to see his Chelsea side sharing the load in terms of goals and assists in the early stages of a post Eden Hazard era at Stamford Bridge] I felt we have options and people have talked about transitions, and obviously there is when you lose a player as impactful as Eden, who scored or created nearly 50 per cent of our goals last year.

You have to accept that and look for where else in the team can we come up with that sort of end product. We have the players to do it. We have attacking players who want to score goals, a team which wants to move the ball quickly and get the ball into wide areas sometimes. We want to be able to cross it, to play through teams and, as a collective, we’re scoring goals. We have to continue in that vein.

Everyone wants an Eden Hazard in the team, don’t get me wrong, but we haven’t and it was what was in front of me. We’ve got good players and it’s important we try and be an attacking force. The Chelsea fans who travelled up to Burnley want to see a team that’s trying to play attacking football and it’s the way I want us to play. Of course, we have to worry about how we defend, but I want us to defend up the pitch if we can. I want us to move the ball really quickly with a view to creating chances and the players are doing that. We work hard on it daily in training, it doesn’t come easily

We had a tough start, but I believed in the group and I believe in them daily – I’m just really pleased where we’ve got to. We’re working hard, but we have to be aware we can improve and if we get overconfident in this moment and start making crazy expectations on ourselves from within – let everyone else talk. From within, it’s game by game and how we can get better day by day. At the minute we have that feeling and it’s my job to keep that going

2019 10 29 Retrieve

[Lampard praises Chelsea progress since Man Utd defeat] It feels a million miles. I’m not disregarding it - they hurt us four times in a game we played particularly well in. We’re improving, that’s the main thing. It’s what we’ve been striving for and it’s pleasing to see good signs. I try not to listen to too much talk about the future. If we do that there would be problems. It’s nice we’re working in a good direction

[Chelsea’s current winning run started with a 7-1 thrashing of Grimsby Town in the last round] We’ll target all the trophies. We want to win every game but we’re up against a top opponent tomorrow. Every game you have to give everything to try and win. A day at Wembley should never be taken likely. But not just for the young boys. We’ll give it our all

[Lampard will rotate his squad following the 4-2 win at Burnley last time out] I don’t want to talk about United too much, but since the first game our points total has been nice. It’s not worth focusing on United other than to say they are full of top players. People shouldn’t be too critical of other clubs. In terms of changes, I’ve got to be aware that we haven’t changed that much. This game may see opportunities for players who haven’t been getting minutes.

I wanted to play every game as a player but on this side, you see things slightly differently. Demands on players are more. I won’t take this game lightly even if I make changes. If players do step out of the line-up with a view to the coming weeks it’s about the big picture. I understand how players are, but those who start will give everything and those who don’t will support them hugely. It helps they are playing well. That’s the nice feeling around at the minute. They are playing and I have to take that into account about rest.

2019 10 29b Retrieve

[Lampard answers Solskjaer’s Chelsea loan system claim] [Marcus] Rashford’s a young player. He’s got how many caps for his country? [Axel] Tuanzebe went on loan last year and did fantastic in the Championship. Dan James has come in and been a fantastic signing for them. I think we’ve all got players with relative experience or not. I think Man Utd have got loads of good players. In terms of the loan system, there probably is some credit. The loans need to be the right loans, need to be the right clubs

I was fortunate to have Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori (at Derby) last year, they were good for me and hopefully I was good for them. That’s how the loan system works at its best when you’re talking about players with really good potential

2019 10 29c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Chelsea snubbed interest in Kurt Zouma during the transfer window after the centre-half impressed on loan at Everton last season] He has been fantastic. There was a belief that I had in Kurt because there was interest in the summer after we all know he had a very good loan at Everton last year. But I believed in him as I believed in Tomori – that is why I made the decisions I made pre-season in terms of where we were going to look defensively. It has been nice to get some stability, albeit because of injuries, between him and Fikayo in the last games. It has been good to get them playing together to see the little bond they are getting on and off the pitch. It is a nice little story and it must continue, I suppose

[Lampard offered support to Zouma at the time but added that the player was able to brush off the negativity to continue on with the job] Well, yes [I spoke to him about the abuse], because I do that with all the players. But it was not as though I had to go to speak to Kurt to pick him up. That would have been reactionary. I am always trying to speak about a performance or a day in training. However, I see [racism], so it is not an out of the blue thing. I try to have those conversations. But Kurt is one of those players, as I mentioned, who just gets on with it. I think he is well-intentioned. He wants to do well, as they all do, and he is working hard and playing well

2019 10 29d Retrieve

[Lampard calls on Premier League officials to use pitchside monitors amid VAR confusion] Yes, I think it is part of VAR. I assumed when it came into the Premier League that would be the case. I think we are at the point now where from my point of view I think they have to. It is difficult. I am not one to bang the drum. It is not easy and even with VAR there is a human element involved because they are the ones that are checking it and it is slightly opinionated. I think at the weekend we saw it flip slightly from the other way from what it had been already with some decisions being changed. Hopefully we find the right middle ground as soon as possible. I think seeing the monitor on the side of the pitch is the way forward

[VAR also came into play in Chelsea’s 4-2 thrashing of Burnley, after Michael Oliver’s decision to award Callum Hudson-Odoi a penalty was overturned and the winger was instead booked for simulation. Burnley manager Sean Dyche was highly critical of Hudson-Odoi’s actions, but Lampard insisted it was not the youngster’s intention to cheat] I said nothing to him. I didn’t feel the need to. I asked him on the day of the game, after my press conference about what happened. He said he had a touch. Clearly when you see it back from behind he gets a touch on his back. I know it is light. I am not saying it is a definite penalty, but it is not a dive. I am not sure if Sean had watched it back from all the angles ahead of when he spoke, but it wasn’t a dive as such. If that becomes a dive, then you will start analysing every bit of contact

2019 10 30 Retrieve

[Lampard says he planned to bring such players through, transfer ban or no transfer ban] I set out this season to see what these young boys could do. If I didn’t have a transfer ban and came to this club and had opportunities to bring players in during the summer, I still would have trusted the young boys. For me to have thrown that away after one game at Manchester United and a few opinions, that would have made me a bit of a flip-flopper

2019 10 31 Retrieve

[Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard said [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) will resume training in the next two or three days] Training in the next two or three days. Hopefully [before the international break]. It’s important, he’s a top player. I’d have liked to have given Jorginho and [Mateo] Kovacic a rest tonight because of the work they’ve put in, but I couldn’t today because of N’Golo, Ross [Barkley] and Ruben [Loftus-Cheek] long-term. I couldn’t make the changes I wanted to today. It is what it is

I don’t think the chant is a slant on Michy Batshuayi. They love Tammy Abraham. The outstanding moment of the game from our point of view was Michy in terms of finish and strength. It’s not easy when another striker’s scoring and you’re not getting involved much, but he has shown something in training

2019 10 31b Retrieve

[Chelsea coach Frank Lampard has attempted to put aside the 2-1 Carabao Cup defeat to Manchester United by insisting the club is more focused on other competitions] We’ve had seven wins on the trot. We’ve had taxing games in the Champions League. We want to get into the next stage of that. Our form in the league has been really good. They’re the priorities. But we want to win matches and give everything. Today, I had to look at my squad and who deserves minutes. The young players. The competition has an element of that for us

[Despite the loss, Lampard was pleased with the performances of several youngsters, as the likes of Marc Guehi, Reece James and Billy Gilmour got a run out] I saw a lot of things that were good for us for the future. A lot of positive things about us. I hate losing. We all do here. But there’s a big picture here and a lot of big games to come, and a busy fixture list. Now we focus on what happens next

[Lampard, a master set-piece taker as a player himself, was full of praise for Rashford’s rocket] It’s great technique - we’ve seen Rashford hits balls with a similar technique [previously]. They don’t always go in the top corner, but it was a stunning strike. Take nothing away from him. We were in the ascendancy, with Mason and Pedro on with fresh legs, but when they got in front they had a lead to defend

2019 10 31c Retrieve

[After Chelsea routed Wolves 5-2 on September 14, Frank Lampard’s youngsters dominated the headlines. Tammy Abraham hitting a hat-trick, and Fikayo Tomori and Mason Mount netting one apiece] Willian was the standout one today. His work ethic when he was off the ball was almost like, if you talk to wingers and tell them what you want from them, we could show them that video of Willian today because of his quality and bursts of pace on the ball. He has been our best player [since I took over]

2019 11 01 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has denied that Antonio Rudiger is fit to return for Chelsea] He’s not fit. I saw the quotes, whether there was a miscommunication I don’t know. He’s going to see a consultant on Monday because he’s got an ongoing issue in the pelvic area. We’ll have to wait for the appointment to see how long he’ll be out. I was surprised by the quotes because he’s not fit

Every player in the squad that’s not available is disappointing but it comes with the territory. [Rudiger] and N’Golo have had a domino effect in injuries from last season. N’Golo’s close, he’s working with the team now. Ross Barkley is still not quite right and he’s another possible answer, but he’s not far away. Andreas Christensen is pretty much fit as well. It’s the finishing touches now

[Asked if the circumstances made the meeting with Watford more dangerous] Without a doubt. I’m very much of that mindset. First, I look at us, and since we’ve been on the winning run, the game became more dangerous because of the idea of overconfidence. We saw what Watford did last year and the personnel are very similar. We cannot underestimate a team that will be hurting because they haven’t won for a while

2019 11 01b Retrieve

[Lampard tells Tomori not to worry about FIFA 20 stats] I don’t know about clearing it up. I’m surprised at Fikayo Tomori, he is fast. I remember FIFA cards when I was about 37 years of age and my pace was 35, so I was actually slower than my age which was really strange. So I take those rankings with a pinch of salt, so should Tomori. The best thing for him to do would be to show it every game he plays, which he has done so far

2019 11 01c Retrieve

[Lampard warns Giroud and Batshuayi he can’t consider international careers when picking Chelsea team] It is difficult for me and it is difficult for them [international managers]. We both have our jobs so it doesn’t feature in my thinking. I have to care for all the players. I have to pick the squad as I see it for the best of Chelsea as they do for their countries. I have got three strikers to pick from and I have to make the choices. I can’t complain about any of their attitudes

[Giroud is out of contract at the Blues in the summer, and on current form, it seems unlikely he would be too keen to extend his stay] I would always have a conversation with a player who says they don’t want to play for the football club, whoever they are. That is something where I would have a clear and honest conversation with them. We are not at that point yet so it is not one to discuss right now.

[While Batshuayi hasn’t featured prominently in the Premier League] He loves scoring goals. That might sound simple for a striker but I’ve seen some that don’t love it quite as much. He does

2019 11 02 Retrieve

[Lampard wants footballers to respect referees like rugby stars do] I think maybe yes [footballers could learn from rugby players]. I think we should maybe have a sit-down with them because I was also thinking how well restrained - not restrained, there is no reason you should be restrained - but how well Owen Farrell and every player, the New Zealand players as well, reacted to the referee in the semi-final. And I think it is certainly something we could take on board - to take a deep breath sometimes more than we do. I think the respect in rugby seems to go both ways - I think we could probably all learn

[Rudiger’s] not fit. I saw the quotes, whether there was a miscommunication I don’t know. He’s going to see a consultant on Monday because he’s got an ongoing issue in the pelvic area. We’ll have to wait for the appointment to see how long he’ll be out. I was surprised by the quotes because he’s not fit. Every player in the squad that’s not available is disappointing but it comes with the territory. [Rudiger] and N’Golo have had a domino effect in injuries from last season. N’Golo’s close, he’s working with the team now. Ross Barkley is still not quite right and he’s another possible answer, but he’s not far away. Andreas Christensen is pretty much fit as well. It’s the finishing touches now.

2019 11 02b Retrieve

[Lampard laments Chelsea sloppiness in win over Watford] We played really well, our midfield was outstanding, but we just cannot have that sloppy bit near the end. It was a terrible 10 minutes considering how the game had gone. We need to be more clinical, we got a bit sloppy. We rely on our goalkeeper for those moments at the end of the game and he did what we needed him to do. I am happy with how the players are playing. It’s great to watch

[Match referee Anthony Taylor waved away muted appeals from the Hornets after the Spaniard went down under a challenge from Jorginho in the box. VAR official Mike Dean overruled Taylor’s decision and said a penalty was the right decision] The longer it went on the more I expected it to be overturned. I was surprised. We got to see it on the big screen and it certainly was not a clear and obvious decision. A little bit of contact is such a grey area. We are in a funny place at the minute with it

2019 11 02c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes the Premier League is not in a great place with VAR after the technology intervened to hand Watford a late penalty in Chelsea’s 2-1 win at Vicarage Road] I have to be careful really but last week we saw a change in VAR, a clear change in penalties getting overturned. I was at a managers’ meeting in midweek and we spoke a lot about it. The absolute consensus from managers, referees, the Premier League was the penalties or decisions - this is what I took from the meeting, anyway - are not going to get overturned unless they’re absolutely clear and obvious, and the VAR absolutely saw something that the referee on the pitch didn’t see. This didn’t, it nowhere near showed that, and the longer it took, the more worried I got. I’m so, so surprised from coming away on Thursday from that meeting to have that decision today

[Last weekend in Chelsea’s 4-2 win over Burnley, Lampard’s side were awarded a penalty on the field only for the decision to be overturned by VAR, with Callum Hudson-Odoi instead booked for diving] I reference back one week to Hudson-Odoi - he goes down, has a hand on the back, gets a yellow card and that’s overturned the other way around. We’re not in a great place with it, are we? Anything that takes that long means there’s something they’re not sure about, so why aren’t we using the screen at the side of the pitch? We’re in a really dangerous place and you’re going to be tossing a coin every week to see what decision you’re going to get

2019 11 03 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has expressed his delight with Christian Pulisic’s efforts in their 2-1 win over Watford, backing him to rack up the goals for the Blues] I love that Christian scored a goal from four yards out. He could have decided not to go the extra mile and that ball flashes across the face and no one gets on the end of it. If he continues doing that sort of thing then the goals will rack up. His general performance was top as well

2019 11 04 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes the next step for his youthful Chelsea side is to sustain their performance levels across the full 90 minutes of matches] At times we are certainly producing some of the form that I want from us. Our work off the ball in some games where we have been pushed hard, like Ajax away and Liverpool, has really pleased me. They have worked on that in training to a level where they are fit enough. In periods of games I am pleased with the way we combine and switch the ball. If I’ve got a gripe it is that we are not sustaining that for long enough at a time

[Chelsea also conceded twice in the final stages of last week’s 4-2 win at Burnley] Maybe it’s football. Liverpool go away [to Aston Villa] and are behind for long periods, Manchester City, too. So maybe I’m being a bit demanding. You have to respect the opponents. It is not always as easy as it appears and football will always be a work in progress. We have young players who have been out on loan who have come in and are working with senior players, so things will always take time to get where you want them to get to

2019 11 04b Retrieve

[Lampard confirms Kante’s return to Chelsea squad for Ajax clash] He is in the squad. It looks like the injuries are clearing up

[Lampard expressed his opinion after the match that VAR could be dangerous for the Premier League in its current state and reiterated his stance on Monday] I have to be careful, last week we saw a clear change and the consensus from everyone was that decisions wouldn’t get overturned if clear and obvious. This wasn’t. I was so so surprised. We’re not in a great place with it. Why aren’t we using the screen on the side of the pitch? You are going to be tossing a coin if you aren’t careful

2019 11 05 Retrieve

[Lampard is a big fan of Kovacic’s versatility and, in particular, his dribbling skills] We can’t be too rigid in our positions and too predictable. I’m fortunate enough to have players that can perform nearly every role in midfield. I’m very happy for them to be quite fluid in how they play. I also want them to be positive in their play and play forward passes, or go by people if that’s one of their attributes. And Mateo certainly has that ability to travel with the ball at pace

[Kante’s return from injury is now imminent and Lampard is excited to have arguably his best player back] N’Golo coming back is huge for us. He’s one of the best midfielders in the world and has been for a few seasons, so I won’t complain about the nice problem that I have with him fit. I want competition for places. We’re playing every three or four days at the minute so I’m going to need all of them and in different positions as well

2019 11 05b Retrieve

[Chelsea and Ajax serve up the Champions League’s greatest and most chaotic game] Today it was a mad one. There aren’t many I can compare it with in my day. We had 4-4s with Liverpool, but the red cards and VAR, it is a new animal and getting used to it. I’m not the only manager mentioning it every week, every manager is at the moment. I can’t give you a dissection of those today because firstly I need to watch it back with a calm head and see them. Secondly when you are on the sidelines it is hard to grasp straight away. I am delighted. Take VAR out of it. I have to look at the spirit and character was something that I loved and the fans loved. We need to tighten up for sure, but with that spirit we can go places

2019 11 05c Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard was left dumbstruck after seeing his side fight back from three goals down to grab a 4-4 Champions League draw against Ajax on Tuesday] I can’t explain the game. For all the things we might analyse back, the madness of the game, we are here for entertainment I suppose and anyone who watched that has to say what a game of football. Respect to Ajax, what a spectacle. I don’t think I have been in a game like it. The two own goals were the story of the first half. I said at half time it will be 3-3 or 4-4, we were so in the game

[Lampard admitted that he was not pleased with the slack defending that allowed 2018-19’s Champions League semi-finalists to net four times] We looked dangerous and I felt we would build momentum. I am not happy overall, this is the Champions League and we made too many mistakes. The biggest pleasure is the spirit the whole stadium showed. I can’t give you much on the red cards, I didn’t really see what they were for. At half time I would have taken a draw for sure. Let’s take it as what it was. I was expecting somewhere towards 10 minutes of added time, not sure where four came from

2019 11 05d Retrieve

[Lampard never doubted his side had the spirit to fight back and revealed that at half-time he had even suggested to his team a 4-4 draw was on the cards] I told the players at half-time that we could draw the game 3-3, or win it 4-3 or 4-4. I’m not saying that to be clever now, but the few moments that we conceded in the first half was a mixture of our sloppiness and also some bad fortune. I will always be self-critical of sloppiness. But I felt that we were in the game, Christian [Pulisic] and Willian, and our pressing off the ball, that we were firmly in the game but needed a bit more in the final third. We needed to lift the spirit of the stadium, so I’m delighted with that part of it. Maybe disappointed in the last 10 minutes not to win it. In the cold light of day we were 4-1 down, so it is a good result in those terms

[Asked if the match was the maddest he’d ever been a part of] It is hard to put it in perspective. I have to watch it back. I had some mad nights over the years, some great nights. But everything it was tonight, the spectacle it was, it is certainly right up there

2019 11 08 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has been named the Premier League Manager of the Month for October after masterminding wins over Southampton, Newcastle and Burnley] Winning an individual award like this, my first one at the club, it is the perfect time to appreciate the close staff who have worked so hard since pre-season and the players, as they are the ones who go out and perform. I am delighted for everybody

I would probably say out of the Premier League games we played in October, the one away against Burnley was the highlight because of the way we were so dominant in our performance and Burnley is a very tough place to go. People may have questioned the fact that we are a young team and with the physical nature of the challenge, but we responded very well and played some really good football. It was a tight turnaround after a big performance physically for the lads at Ajax and with the travel back. To go up to Burnley at any time is difficult but we managed the game really well

2019 11 08b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Chelsea will be looking in the mirror rather than worrying about how their potential Premier League title rivals fare this weekend] We’re looking in the mirror at ourselves. Up and down are things you can’t always control - what will be will be with those teams. They have their problems or strong points or whatever. What we have to do is look at ourselves week in, week out, look at Crystal Palace tomorrow, go away for the internationals, and then we come back and we play Manchester City. Every week brings the challenge of a game. At the moment, we’re happy with what we’ve done but I think we can always get a lot better. That’s the only way: I don’t think we should look too much anywhere else, rather than within

Ross Barkley has an ongoing issue, so he’s not in the squad for tomorrow. It’s a conversation I’ll have with Gareth or Steve [Holland, England assistant] with Ross and everyone to see how it pans out for him over the next 10 days. I’m not sure on that one, but he won’t be in our squad. With Mason, he’s in the squad, and we’re giving him another 24 hours. We’ll make a call on that one in the morning [Saturday].

2019 11 08c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has challenged Mateo Kovacic to end his goal drought] The quality he has shown in big parts this season, and I think the natural progression is goals and we are working on that one. You might see a big smile if he scores, not just from me but from the group because we know he has the quality to score and that will be the next step. I think it’s commonplace for players coming from a foreign league to the Premier League to have a period of settling in. And I think with Kovacic I thought there were some really good signs and positives from him last year.

The fact he was changing in and out of the team is never easy, I get that. And now as a manager, I get that even more. I do think he feels at home now. Not that I knew how he was last year but his personality shines through in the group. He’s a very likeable character with a nice tough side to him, in terms of how I see him on the pitch and off the pitch. He’s a really good player. He’s now signed to the club, I get that that can make someone feel happy, and he’s been playing really well

[In the chaos of Chelsea’s midweek 4-4 draw with Ajax in the Champions League, Zouma dribbled almost 60 yards before attempting a long-range strike that went over] The bravery to step in with the ball. We like defenders to be able to step in but sometimes they don’t step in with too much pace it’s a worry with the traffic they go into. But he had the ability to dodge and double step over. I probably laughed because it’s not often you see a centre back doing that. Then he converted back to being a centre back with the finish. That made me laugh. In the bigger picture, it shows the confidence he is playing with.

As happy as I am with that is as happy as I am with the way he has defended in the last period of games, him and Fikayo have formed a nice partnership. It’s great to have Andreas back now and Toni will be back because we need numbers in those positions. What Kurt has done, which is not easy, is to go out on loan where people then start to consider you something different to a Chelsea player. But I never did. I told him very early in pre-season that I see him as part of my plans here. I believed in his qualities and tried to give him that confidence. He’s got better and better as the season has gone on. He’s a leader in the group. Strong physically to look at but also a quality player, so I’m delighted with how he’s played.

I never had that one-on-one conversation with him. But going out on loan a couple of times could make you feel differently. I get coming back to your home club is maybe mentally a bit of a challenge but what I will say is he came back off a really good loan at Everton last year and was very well spoken of. It was great for him to play regular games. You forget the serious, serious injury he had before that. He needed games. He felt confident in that team, as he should have done. Now he’s come back here. I’ve not had that real conversation with him on that front but maybe there was a touch of it earlier in the season but now he’s shown what he is worth to us here with the way he is playing

2019 11 08d Retrieve

[Lampard on how his pet Minnie and other superstitions impact Chelsea’s preparations] Routines. Like walking the dog, or what time I leave, or the boots I wear in training, or little bits and bobs. It’s more routine than structure, which can be quite awkward. I walk the dog at certain times and on certain days. The day before training, I will walk her at a certain time, for a certain route. Nothing that exciting. I put the lead on. I take her out in the morning. I go out early before I leave, I take her down to the local coffee shop, get my takeaway coffee, walk around, pick up her sh*t, put it in the bin, walk her home then go to training. I walk the dog a lot and I find it quite good for clearing the head. I like to go to the gym as well – that’s another one of my superstitions. I have to spend the same amount of time on the bike – 50 minutes – or the amount that I run - things like that. I’m still sweating now. I’ve just been doing it.

If I don’t do them, then I can feel like, ridiculously, as if it might have an effect on the result. Sometimes I do miss the dog walk for whatever reason. I’m also a relatively new dad, my daughter is a year and a bit, so sometimes I have to do other things etcetera. So it does not absolutely hold me down. But I don’t mind structure and I like walking the dog. So if it was painful, I would probably try and get rid of it, but it actually fits nicely. I like going to the gym, I like walking the dog, I like eating pasta as a pre-match meal, so I stick with certain things. I think we are all different, and I don’t completely rely on it. I joke a little bit, but I think it shows how much you want to do well and win sometimes, whether it has an effect or not. And I think if that’s in your mindset, that’s not the worst thing, albeit it might become a bit annoying sometimes if you stick to it

[Lampard earned his first manager of the month award for his perfect month in the Premier League, but coaches often lose their next game after winning the award prompting some to say it is cursed] On the curse, I have heard of it. I know it and I am relatively superstitious. I was always as a player and I carry it into my management. So hopefully the players will go out and prove the curse wrong tomorrow because we want to carry on our momentum. I purely see it as a good month and it’s very early days. It will only resonate if it becomes a regular occurrence, or it means points and success for us as a club. That’s tough. I realise how tough it is. It was only three games in a month and we won all of them. I know the work that goes into that, I know the competition, so it resonates nicely but in the short term, I won’t get ahead of myself, even though it’s not been won here for a few years. It’s more just a signal of the competitive nature of the Premier League. Probably. I don’t think I won one in the Championship last year, so yeah. I’m certainly not singing ‘I won it all’, because I was manager of the month!

2019 11 08e Retrieve

[Chelsea have been without England international Loftus-Cheek since he ruptured his Achilles tendon in May] It’s a long road. It’s a difficult one for Ruben, because we want him back, we all know his quality. But it’s going to be a while, it’s going to be a while. I feel for him, because people will ask and the thing to say would be, ‘Yeah, I’m really pushing on, it might be next week, it might be next month’. But I don’t think that’s quite the case. We need to let him get on with it. We’re all supporting him here. There’s no immediate news.

[A similar situation occurred last week with Rudiger, who has played just once since a serious knee injury in April] [Rudiger] had an operation and he’s going to be out for probably about three weeks hopefully. Then we’ll have to see how the match fitness comes in, because it’s a long time Toni’s been out now. It was nice to get something definitive about it. We’ve been trying to find a solution, Toni’s been having some issues, and it’s not easy for someone in that position. Hopefully we are at that case now and, in three weeks’ time, we’ll be in a better place

You’re going to do well to cover quality players. We’ve not had N’Golo [Kante] for a big part of the season, Ruben Loftus-Cheek we’ve not had, Toni, of course, we’ve not had. So that’s one of the nice stories in terms of the rest of the squad, but we’ll gladly take them all back.

2019 11 09 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard believes VAR has put the league in a really dangerous place] We are going to be tossing a coin every week to see what decisions you get

2019 11 09b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is confident that Mateo Kovacic can start scoring regularly for Chelsea now that he feels at home at Stamford Bridge] It is commonplace for foreign players coming to the Premier League to have a period of settling in, that is normal. From Kovacic, I thought there were some really good performances last year. The fact he was in and out the team is never easy but I do think he feels at home now. His personality shines through in the group and he is a very likeable character with a slightly, nice tough side to him on and off the pitch, and he is a really good player. Now the natural progression is scoring goals and we are working on that one. You might see a big smile if he scores, not just from me or him but from the group, because we know he has the quality to score and that will be the next step

He [Zouma] and Fikayo have formed a really nice partnership and it is great to have Andreas back now, and Toni will be back, because you need numbers in those positions. What Kurt Zouma has done, which is not easy, is to go out on loan and people then start to consider you something different from a Chelsea player. I never did. I told him very early in pre-season that he was part of my plans here and I believe in his qualities. I try to give him that confidence and he has got better and better as the season goes on. He is a bit of a leader in the group, strong physically to look at but a quality player, so I am delighted with how he plays

2019 11 09c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard issued an ultimate vote of confidence in Chelsea’s youth project] I’m proud of them and I believe in them and with Reece, Azpi’s our captain, I spoke to him before the game, he’s a great leader for the club and so important for us. I just felt today was a game that we can get Reece some minutes because he’s deserving of them the way he’s training and playing and, with Zaha, what better test. Every team has players that can hurt you on the counterattack, Zaha is one of the best, but could we hurt them the other way? Could we make him run back more than he ran forward? And I trust Reece defensively so really, really impressive game from him and he’s going to get much better

2019 11 09d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard played down any suggestion of a title challenge for Chelsea after they recorded a sixth successive Premier League win against Crystal Palace on Saturday] We’re just happy with what we’re doing. We’re working hard. It’s great to go into the international break off the back of that. At the start of the weekend, we can sit back a little bit now and watch the other games, and we respect where Liverpool and Manchester City are, and that was the gap to try and bridge in some way going into this season. At the minute we’re staying close and we’re on good form. I was a little bit frustrated [at half-time]. We allowed the tempo to drop through the half. We started pretty well, if we get the early goal it feels a different game but, as the game went on, it became a bit broken, we were a bit slow with throw-ins, and re-taking free kicks, forward passes and I just felt if we increased the tempo the game was there to win. The players went out and did that

[Lampard has been rewarded for his faith in Chelsea’s academy stars at the start of his managerial reign] I did believe in the younger players. I’ve watched them from afar. We know the academy well. Not just myself, Jody, Joe, Chris Jones. We do feel the club and we know them so that gave us a little bit of a headstart on that point but you never know with young players until you put them in and when you put them in in a bit of a group, even more so. If you’ve got two, three, four in there they really have to step up quickly at this level or it won’t last.

They’ve clearly shown they have the ability, the mindset, the desire to play for Chelsea. They’re surrounded by some fantastic experienced players. I mentioned Azpi, and his attitude week-in-week-out and Willian’s work-rate today, people want to think of him as a winger and judge solely on that but I massively judge him on what he does off the ball and his constant running. Kante playing in there, Kovacic, Jorginho’s not there today, I could go on and on. The balance we’ve got feels good, which is obviously helping the young boys

2019 11 09e Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has called on Tammy Abraham to look up to England team-mate Harry Kane after the Chelsea striker joined Jamie Vardy at the top of the Premier League scoring charts] Harry Kane’s an incredible player. What he’s done in recent years and his career is amazing, so Tammy needs to look up to that and if he can keep reproducing and scoring goals at that kind of level, that’s the next stage for Tammy. What he’s shown in these first few months is that there are so many parts to his game. [There was] not much space today because of how Palace play but I told him at half-time just to stick with it, it’s one of those games that forwards will have where they work a lot for not much, but maybe a goal and he did that

[Abraham opened the scoring at Stamford Bridge against Crystal Palace on Saturday. Lampard has now tasked his side with replicating their form over the course of the campaign] We certainly deserved to win the game. The first half was frustrating because we had all of the game, had some chances but not enough clear-cut ones, let the tempo drop slightly. As soon as we picked it up in the second half I thought we got a deserved win with two clinical goals and a clean sheet. They are [consistent] because we’re on a good run and with the older players the balance is pretty good, the older players help the younger ones. The young ones have to realise very quickly what this level is, and it’s tough. But they’re working very hard, improving. It’s still early days in a way, so can we replicate it through a longer period is the next test

2019 11 10 Retrieve

[Lampard: Raw talent Reece James will become a big player for Chelsea] He’s got the abilities to go very, very far. It’s hard to cap that or not cap it, but what I see from him in training, I saw it in him at Wigan. Jody and Joe know him well from the youth teams here and speak highly of him of talents. I saw it last year and I’m seeing it now in training. When you see experienced players respect young players who come train with them and see the quality, it’s always a good sign. I’ve got huge belief that he can go as far as he wants to go in the game.

I’ve seen so much improvement. His raw talent and ability was there to see today. This is just the start of the story. There is a lot more to add to that. He’s going to be a big, big player for this club. Right-back would be his favourite position. Whether right-back, or wing-back, or right of three centre backs, that would be his ideal position. At the moment as he’s coming into the team, you’ll see him there, but he does have that natural round game that he can handle playing centrally and in midfield, if need be. At the moment we’ve got good players in there that are used to playing in there but he could always do that as his career matures

He [Azpilicueta] took it as I thought he would, as a perfect professional. It was not a problem. He wants to play, of course, he does, but he also understands the quality of Reece and the fact that through the long course of the season, not just for Azpi but for every position, there is a lot of change. Azpi had played every minute of every game this season, barring the EFL Cup. So I don’t think it was the worst for him to have a rest. We’ve got massive games coming up after the break

2019 11 10b Retrieve

[Lampard on Willian’s contract talks: Everyone knows I love and rely on him] The word isn’t no brainer because I can’t get involved in the money. That’s up to the club to do. But everyone sees how much I’m relying on him, and picking him and in what he is producing, I love him at this football club. So there’s my answer. I know his qualities from playing with him but when I looked at Willy over the last couple of years, he was in and out of the team. You’re not sure, from the outside, I want to see him happy. Willy is a happy, easy-going lad who loves his football and that was the first thing I said to him at the start of the season. I saw him being huge in the way I wanted to play. Naturally, on the ball, we all know his ability to go by, one v one, and shift people and cross or get shots away. But his off-the-ball work is an outstanding example for Callum Hudson-Odoi, for Christian Pulisic, for other young players who think the only part of the game is going by people, crossing or shooting

He certainly has the Brazilian flair in terms of his touch and his feet but I know what you mean. His burst of pace away from people is somewhat Brazilian in some players but the selfless side of his game is always a starting point for me. As we worked as a staff here, it was about how good we could be off the ball. Then think about on the ball afterwards. For someone who is showing that example up the pitch, it reflects everywhere. He does the other side brilliantly with absolute humility. He’s been a joy and one of the experienced players who is helping the young boys

[They have now won their past six league games but Lampard isn’t keen to say that his side are ready to make a title push just yet to compete with Liverpool and Man City] I don’t see beyond the next game. Ours being Manchester City, so it doesn’t take a lot of your focus off it. It’s nice to be above City because I’ve got huge respect for them. What a team. But I certainly won’t announce ourselves in a title race because we are relatively new because we are slightly in transition with younger players. To get carried away, we would be our biggest enemy. To say that would be a bit naive because we are not even a third of the way through the season. If we can keep replicating the form, keep replicating the results, then we can certainly close the gap and I think that is the first step

2019 11 22 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard rules out emulating Mourinho with Spurs move] I can firmly say no. You can replay that in 10 years. I was here for 13 years as a player, have a deep feeling for the club. That’s no disrespect to Tottenham, I have a lot of friends who are Tottenham fans and Arsenal fans, but sometimes there are feelings which mean you just wouldn’t do it. Not disrespectful to the club, but because of what Chelsea has given me as a player and now, it’s something that is certainly not on my list.

That’s only [Mourinho’s] decision and you only make that decision as you go. Jose has managed a lot of football clubs over a long career. That’s his decision, whether fans judge him or not for it is something that’s out of his hands. As a professional, you have to understand a right to work but we do have this tribal instinct in this country where fans react to it

History and results speak for themselves. The trophies and titles he’s managed to win at the clubs he has worked at. Things like that are not shocks or surprises, they’re because of hard work and what you put in, he’s done that consistently at the teams that he’s been at, that’s what we measure him by. Wherever you go is a new beginning, so I don’t think you can rely on that and I don’t think he will be. People will hold up his record and expect big things from him.

Spurs have had a difficult start but when you look at the team Pochettino has built and what Mourinho takes on is a group of very good players even though they’re in a slightly false position at the moment for whatever reason. They’re in the top-four race. That was the story at the start of the season and it’ll be the story at the end of the season because of their quality. When you look at their team, pound-for-pound, over the last three or four years, it’s why they reached the Champions League final. You look at their strength in depth, the individual talent, especially in forward areas, they’re going to be a threat

2019 11 22b Retrieve

[Christian Pulisic fit to face Man City after Chelsea star misses USMNT matches] Christian Pulisic didn’t go [to the US camp], he was struggling against Palace. He has been training and is in contention. I want it to be a positive issue. It is great for me. It is something we have done pretty well - we have had fluidity in our midfield. We can use them all collectively. You have to give Jorginho the freedom to leave his position. He has a perception for the press

[Lampard is also pleased that his side find themselves above Pep Guardiola’s City in the league standings] The levels they have reached have been incredible. For us to be in that position, I am pleased with. But I want more. It’s not the end story, they are a strong outfit. I won’t make huge judgements on tomorrow, our story is three months in the making

[In his playing days, the Chelsea legend spent a season on loan with Man City and spoke positively of his experience there] I had a great year at City, I go there with nothing but good feelings. But I am Chelsea manager and I want to win

2019 11 22c Retrieve

[Lampard defends Chelsea fines: I’m not a dictator, Azpilicueta helped me set them!] I can understand it might sound harsh. It’s not harsh if you’re not late. It’s nothing. That’s one thing. I think we put in the discipline for one reason. My only concern when that came out was it makes me look like trying to be Mr Tough Guy. I’m not. We spoke with the players and I gave the list to Azpilicueta when we set out the fines. In fact, I was asking him if there were any areas you see because I wanted to know what happened last year, whether the players were happy, were they not. That came into the picture as well so it’s certainly a bit of a joint effort.

Maybe the numbers were chosen by myself to a degree. I do think discipline is an important thing and I’m very happy to work with the players. I want to be successful. I expect them to look after each other on the pitch and when they train, so I expect them to respect each other in terms of turning up. If you talk about coming late to training, we arrive at 10 and we start training at 11. If you’re late for training, you’re like an hour and 15 minutes late without any excuse, that’s quite a big deal if you’re preparing for a game against Man City the next day.

I know the fines are relative. People can have their own mind. But the players are certainly big in the setting up of that and I think it’s important to have discipline in the workplace. They were part of the process. I’m not here to be a dictator and make things difficult. We’re here to be successful as a football club and discipline’s part of it and I worked with them in putting it together. The fine money goes to charities and it said on the form about having certain team get-togethers. We haven’t had any of those. Predominantly it will go to charities of our choice. I don’t mind as long as it’s good causes

[Chelsea travelled north on Friday ahead of their trip to Manchester City in Premier League action on Saturday] It wasn’t a priority because I feel whatever would be would be after my career and I didn’t want to take my eye off the ball. Some players take their coaching badges at a younger age. I didn’t feel like I had the time, in my mind and physically, to do all that. So it was very firmly in the back seat. But at the time I was trying to look around me more and see things from a different side, which was less as a player and more about how I’d work with people around me

[Lampard will face both Man City and Pep Guardiola for the first time as a manager] We went toe to toe with them, our certain style against their fantastic style, and I think they were absolutely right up there. I won’t say it was a pleasure, but it is a pleasure to look back on and see the quality and having felt the quality of the teams. The feeling at Camp Nou, and when we played Bayern Munich a bit, was that they would squeeze the life out of you on the ball so you had no time. So you would spend the whole time defending the quality that they have and how they move the ball so quickly and so well. So that was something when you talk about experiences and how you want to be when you become a manager, playing against his team was certainly an experience that you want to take forward

2019 11 22d Retrieve

[Lampard: Mourinho not right to say I turned my back on Chelsea to join Man City] At the time I didn’t feel it was quite right, I have to say that. It was directly after the match and sometimes the emotions of the match can affect the comment or type of comment. The bigger picture on that one for me is the love story or not is probably always decided by the fans and the club. It has proven now I am here managing the club but even then I think a lot of people understood how I felt about Chelsea, always did, always will do, regardless of the year at Manchester City. I have got no problem with that.

I think it was more a comment made in the emotions after the match. I think the reaction of me going to Manchester City, which was something I was concerned about after 13 years here. I wondered at 36 whether a year there was something I should take on because of what I feel about this club. And then my professional head, the challenge of it and the period I had where I wasn’t going to be playing before going to New York FC, all came together and made me take a decision which was quite tough at the time. But to see then the feeling I got from the Chelsea fans on that day was an emotional thing for me and it hasn’t stopped from that day.

[Lampard says he pays no attention to the analysis of TV pundits] When you work on the TV, in the media as a pundit, you have opinions to make about the way you see the game. Sometimes there are reasons for what you say. Sometimes it’s just your opinion on the game and I thought it was just someone else’s opinion. Sometimes you get too swayed by opinions of others, whoever they are, even though I respect Jose completely. My worry is Chelsea, not really anybody else’s worry. It’s not his worry, particularly not now. But I’ve got no problem. And, as I say, if you were to look at the bigger games we’ve played, it could be quite loose to look at it and say: ‘Oh we haven’t won those games.’

If you look at the performances against Liverpool, anyone who watched closely will see that we were possibly the better side in Istanbul and unlucky not to get at least a draw at home. And that’s Liverpool who are, as it stands, the best team in the country in terms of points, so I won’t look at it that closely. I look at where we are in the table. I look at where we can improve and I’ve got faith in the team as we go forward.

[Lampard went on to say that didn’t think his assistant Morris needed punishment after his ‘laughing emoji’ response to Mourinho on social media] First of all, I don’t really do too much social media. I have one eye on it at times I think it is important to have your eye on it these days. I thought it was light-hearted. We’re all Chelsea boys and we care deeply about the team. Sometimes you listen to a lot of stuff and sometimes you have to take a lot of stuff on the chin. I think it was very small fry and not a problem for me. Yes, you have to be careful with social media but I know the work and care put in and where we want to get to, so I’m not concerned by small, one, two, three worded tweets

2019 11 23 Retrieve

[Lampard: I won’t judge Chelsea on the Man City match] We are playing Man City and I’m not going to judge us right now on that one game. I will judge us over what we’ve done until now, how we keep improving, how we work and where we go over a bigger period. We know that when you go to Man City or any of these big teams that you can lose, but what you must do is give everything and not roll over, no matter what happens, and you must fight until the end and give everything you can as a team. We won’t change our plan hugely. Some people ask if we’re going to go there and defend or can we go and attack but you’re going to have to defend, it’s all about how well you do it and it’s going to be a huge part of the game

There’s a balance to it for me and one thing is that we’re playing well. I don’t want to hide that from the players and double bluff them - they are playing well and they should know that. But the other thing is, when you come up against these teams, you don’t know if you’re going to be judged at the end of the season on these games because there are 38 matches in a season and we want to win a huge majority of them. But you do know that when you come up against them head to head, the level of detail and the finer moments of the game will be the deciding factor

2019 11 23b Retrieve

[Chelsea fail title test but Lampard’s side have closed the gap to Man City] It’s a great test to see where we’re at. It won’t be the end story. Anyone can go to Manchester City and lose; they are such a strong outfit, so I won’t be making huge judgements, win or lose

2019 11 23c Retrieve

[Lampard disappointed by Chelsea’s ‘small details’ as Man City inflict rare loss] We were controlling the game, we were playing some great stuff and we felt in control but you can’t be absolutely in control against Manchester City. It was bad luck for their first goal, and absolute quality from Riyad Mahrez for the second and that changed the game. Maybe we were a bit slow with our movement at the back, I know we were giving them a good game but I am disappointed with the small details. If you look at City they are an example, and we’re at the absolute start of that process. A few of our players were in the Championship, but we want more

Everyone seems slightly fixated on those couple of games we’ve played, like Liverpool and City. We have gone toe for toe with them, drawing in Istanbul and then losing on penalties. Lost at home in the league pushing for 45 minutes. We have lost today with a very good performance, it is moments in the boxes. That is not something you can actually put down as a rule going into a game of why you win it or don’t. These teams like Liverpool and City have been getting results for a long time, they have worked together and worked hard, they get things right. Today I don’t think you can come away from that game and think anything other than it was two really strong teams going against each other. One wins it because of a deflected goal and one moment of real quality from Mahrez and the rest was pretty much in the balance

2019 11 25 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Chelsea are slightly ahead of the curve as his youthful Blues squad continue to exceed expectations in 2019-20] It’s hard to explain my expectation at the start of the season, because until you’ve worked daily with the players – and you bring players who were playing in the Championship last year and younger players that have never been here – you don’t quite know how that’s going to drop and how it ends up. I’ve been really happy with a lot of our stuff this season, so maybe that means we’re slightly ahead of the curve. But in football, the curve will go downhill very fast if you don’t keep on yourself and take a lot of the lessons from this game and move forward. Now our test is: can we really bounce back from a defeat when we’re used to winning? That’s another challenge for us all

The feeling in the dressing room [after the City defeat], it looked like they were very disappointed. That’s probably a simple answer, because we lost, but also I think they expect a lot of themselves. I think they will take an amount of confidence, but where we want to go to means that we might come here and win, and it might mean we can actually win titles going forward. I like to see them disappointed – it just shows the next question is the reaction we have. I expected us to compete in the game, because I’ve been watching us training daily, getting performances and playing well. I’m confident in the players we’ve got. I wanted us to win, so I probably haven’t changed my [long-term] mindset too much. I know this Premier League is hard and next week against West Ham will be a huge challenge, different to this, but we have to try and win it. I don’t want to jump ahead of ourselves. We’ll just go back to the training ground, back to our work and see where we can get to.

2019 11 26 Retrieve

[Lampard unhappy at Ross Barkley after topless nightclub photos] I think there are two separate issues. One is the headlines this week, Ross knows how I felt about the first headline. I backed him then, I still back him now but he showed a moment of a lack of professionalism as far as I’m concerned. And it’s not something that I want to be a pure dictator on and come down hard because I also understand that all my players are humans and have lives and I don’t police every moment of their life.

So I don’t think it’s a terrible thing that he’s done but all Ross needs to do now, he’s had an injury and he’s still kind of carrying the injury – he still gets a bit of pain on shooting – so he just has to work his way back in. In terms of the fitness thing, he trained well and I certainly don’t hold anything against my players. I like Ross, he’s firmly one of my players and I think it was something he needs to show all his reactions on the pitch

2019 11 27 Retrieve

[Why is Chelsea’s £71m record signing Kepa Arrizabalaga showing signs of struggle?] Goalkeepers pride themselves on clean sheets. One of the things I’ve seen from Kepa this season from working with him is that he’s a very determined and very good professional who wants to improve. He goes about his work daily in a way that is very focused and I love that. In terms of confidence, his confidence shouldn’t go down. The clean sheets are not always just his own responsibility. He knows that. But when there have been moments this season where he feels it may have been his responsibility, he is very open to accept that fact and work to improve. I’ve been really impressed with him

2019 11 27b Retrieve

[Madness at Mestalla: Chelsea are flawed but so much fun] We nearly won it, nearly lost it. Parts of our performance I’m not mad on. We gave away too many chances. We missed a lot as well. That’s something we’re doing a lot of at the minute – not putting our chances away. But can’t turn away from fact they had a lot of chances. They were arriving in our box too much. Credit to the players for their work-rate and hanging on in there, but sometimes you have to be more secure than that. It’s difficult to come here, I know that from coming here as a player. When the atmosphere turns, sometimes you’re hanging on, but it keeps it in our hands

2019 11 27c Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard was fearful immediately after Tammy Abraham’s injury] The word at half-time was it looked quite severe, a bang on the hip. Then the word after the game was it might not be as severe as we first thought. That’s as much details as I have

[Lampard admitted that his side are slightly fortunate to be in such a position after watching their opponents fluff their lines several times] We both had incredible chances, we had one in the first few minutes. We had numerous ones in the first half, so did they. Maybe their chances were more clear-cut than ours. I wouldn’t say I feel fortunate. Did I love the match? No I didn’t love it. Because it hasn’t been many times this season where I have had to say ‘we kind of got away with that’. Today was one of those because they missed big opportunities. Perhaps we deserved the slices of luck that we got tonight, but I won’t take away from the fact that we have to take some of our opportunities. It could have been 5-5, 6-6, one of those games

2019 11 29 Retrieve

[With Chelsea attacking at will but toiling defensively, the game really was as open and chaotic as the 4-4 draw with Ajax on matchday four] It was end to end, not that we wanted that

2019 11 29b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has revealed that Chelsea will be without Tammy Abraham for a derby date with West Ham as the England striker is still in some considerable pain] We will know by the end of the weekend, he won’t be available for tomorrow. There’s a lot of pain. We will see by Monday. It is a squad game, the lads have been training well and when opportunities come they are ready

[Pressed on whether he could turn to Michy Batshuayi for inspiration in the final third] We’ll see. A work ethic, a quality. It is not easy when you are not playing as many minutes as you want. I have seen a great work ethic and his quality. It is great to see

[Chelsea have kept just one clean sheet in their last seven games across all competitions] I didn’t like the last 20 minutes against Valencia, but I’m not concerned about defence. We have conceded more than we want. In the Premier League you are going to concede goals, there is always need for improvement. We are okay, but we want more

[Lampard said when offering an update on Antonio Rudiger’s condition] Antonio Rudiger is getting closer, it is a mini pre-season, he is working very hard

2019 11 30 Retrieve

[Lampard said he had taken plenty from managers, including Pellegrini, later in his career] As I got older as a player I was probably more attentive of a manager’s nature and things they said, how they held meetings and things like that. It was always something you put into the bank and think, well, that could be how I want to do it or not.

2019 11 30b Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea were never going to be Invincibles & defeats help learning process] Generally, collectively yes we can handle that game better. I think that’s part of the process. I don’t think this will be the worst thing for us because I keep hearing positive great stories about us over the last six weeks or eight weeks. I always try to close my ears and don’t like them because of what this league is and the fight there is over the course of the season. There will be moments like this. We were never going to come through the season as Invincibles. It wasn’t going to be the way. They are little tests for us and we have to pass them, so looking back on the game could they have done something more? Yes, collectively we can do more going forward and manage the game better

[Lampard added on coming unstuck against a West Ham side that has been struggling for consistency] Shocked isn’t the word. The Premier League is what it is. Nothing is easy or given to you. Disappointed rather than shocked

It can’t be one player. Tammy was enforced and had been going well. But at the same time I had to think about the squad and we had a taxing game where we had to give everything physically. We arrived back late [from Spain] and I had to think about how we think about it going forward. It also gives me a look about how we are generally, because we aren’t going to get through the season with just ten or 11 players. I think the team out there had enough quality to win this game

[Pressed on whether he has enough depth in his squad] That will pan out itself over the course of the season, because the transfer ban has been talked about, it is enforced upon us but I still believe in this squad. If you look at this today we made some changes but we didn’t perform the way that we wanted to. There will be questions asked of us from the outside, there will be questions I will want asked for myself on the inside. I do believe in the squad and I think we have shown some great stuff this season. There haven’t been many times I have said we were below par, hardly at all. Today was one of those days. But I don’t think it is time for harsh reactions and judgements across individuals across the team as I see it. It is time for a look at a bit of character to see our reaction against Aston Villa [on Wednesday]

2019 12 01 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes Christian Pulisic is capable of playing up front] We’ll see. He’s got an ability to run behind the line and to be sharp in central areas, which will naturally get him more goals but I’m not going to say right now that’s the solution. We’ll see going forward

[Giroud’s selection ahead of Michy Batshuayi was something of a surprise] It was a difficult game for him. He didn’t get enough of the ball and then the couple of chances he had didn’t go in for him. It was a tough match for him but he wasn’t the only one who came into the team and the performance was slightly off it. It was not the easiest game. We train hard. Some players, with the nature of how squads are in the modern game, we have to train hard to be at a level to come in. I wouldn’t want to point it to match fitness. Michy has had a lot of performances to come on lately and has made a difference in certain games but it was just a choice for this game

[Pedro was another who toiled, with Lampard looking to rotate his squad amid a busy winter fixture schedule] I don’t want to talk about match fitness or sharpness because we’re training hard. I get it, I was a player and when you’re not playing regularly the need for games is big. But we have to be ready to try and come in. We shouldn’t isolate individuals because then you could be talking about a player who has played every game and wasn’t quite as sharp. The reasons are never quite as simple as they seem

[Lampard is hoping that Abraham, who hurt his hip against Valencia in the Champions League, will be in contention to face Aston Villa on Wednesday] We’ll find out Monday or Tuesday. He needs to get outside and move a little bit outside over the next two days

2019 12 03 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has delivered a positive update on the fitness of Tammy Abraham, with it possible that the Chelsea striker could return to action against Aston Villa] We are giving him every opportunity to play tomorrow. We will make the call tomorrow, he has a little bit of pain. He was in good form, he is always keen, he is trying his best

[Lampard has reiterated that expectation in the final third cannot be rested on the shoulders of one individual] You can’t isolate it to one player and game. He can’t just be the reason for losing the game [against West Ham]. He is an important player for us. We have competition in that area. It is always a collective, every performance. There is responsibility, but players have to come in anytime. In the modern day I am not the only one to have that situation, you have to trust the professionalism of the players. Everyone is a human and wants to play every week

[The Blues will be without Ross Barkley and Antonio Rudiger] Ross Barkley has been sick since Monday night, not fit to be in the game. Antonio Rudiger we are hoping he will be available in a week to 10 days

2019 12 03b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard claims that the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s (CAS) verdict on Chelsea’s appeal against a FIFA imposed transfer ban is coming very soon] I haven’t heard any more so I will wait and reserve judgement. The judgement is coming very soon

[Lampard added on his side needing a positive reaction against Villa] I think it is part of football. I don’t know why anyone thought it would be a breeze. Man City away is a tough match. We have to focus on our reaction. There were basics we didn’t do. We lost a little bit of that and it is important we prepare for Villa

[Lampard refused to place the blame for his side’s recent slump at the feet of his strikers With Tammy Abraham out injured, Olivier Giroud started ahead of Michy Batshuayi in the loss to West Ham] It is always a collective, every performance. There is responsibility, but players have to [be ready to] come in [at] any time. In the modern-day, I am not the only one to have that situation, you have to trust the professionalism of the players. Everyone is human and wants to play every week

2019 12 03c Retrieve

[Lampard expects ‘pretty emotional’ night for John Terry on Stamford Bridge return] It’s not much different for me, I went up against him twice last year. We obviously get on very well and I’ve got huge respect for him and the work he and Dean Smith have done there with Aston Villa. So I think it’s more about John, and the reception he’ll quite rightly get from the Chelsea fans - the most decorated captain, the greatest captain who won everything. He feels the club, everyone knows that, and I’m sure the fans will certainly show their appreciation. I’m sure it will be pretty emotional for John, and he deserves that moment, and I’ll certainly be pleased to see his face back at the Bridge

2019 12 03d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard: It’s a matter of time before Jack Grealish gets England call-up] I think he’s doing it. He’s playing at a level now where he is obviously forcing himself into the argument. It’ll probably be a matter of time. I never want to tell Gareth what to do but his performances at the moment of a really high level. He’s a big threat for us and a fantastic player. His game has really come on. He is a joy to watch when he’s not against you because he moves so well with the ball. He’s a really good player

[Lampard said before explaining why John Terry wasn’t considered for his backroom staff] I can’t guess the future. I don’t know. When I took the Derby job, he was already on his own path then and they obviously got promoted in the summer. John was very comfortable there and working away. I had my team that I worked with here. I think everyone has their own route. It’s not that I’m surprised, it’s just a path he’s chosen. It’s working well alongside Dean at a very good club that he already had a link with from his final year playing there. I think it was a very normal thing for him to choose to do and I’m sure he’ll have a very long and successful career in coaching, management, in whatever way he wants to take it. We all have to start in our different ways and he’s starting well. It’s (Aston Villa) a good choice for me. He’s working at a good club with good surroundings and I’m sure he’s working every day, as we all do every day. It’s just his path. Every time I’ve met Dean, he’s been a gentleman. He’s a very nice man, good to talk to, very open when we’ve talked after the games that we played last year. Although it was so disappointing for us when we lost the play-off final at Derby, it couldn’t happen to a better man than Dean Smith and John working alongside

[Abraham scored 26 goals in the Championship before being recalled to Stamford Bridge this campaign] Terry Abraham’d already scored goals in the Championship with Bristol City. After that, he had a year at Swansea in the Premier League and a tough year where they obviously struggled and he didn’t get the goals he’s getting now. It was an important loan for him to go to a big club where the responsibility is strong on you as the main man upfront to score goals. He obviously reacted well to that and scored a lot. He worked on his game. I saw that. He would have been all the better for working closely with Dean and John in that role there. It gave him confidence and it felt the right time for him to come back after that. Now he’s had a few loans, he’s scored goals, he’s proved it. It was very natural for the progression from my point of view for him to come back. I only knew Tammy from a distance when he was in and around the academy. All I saw was what I saw last year in the Championship, which impressed me, and what I saw from the first day of pre-season, which impressed me. That’s why I decided to give him the No.9 shirt. I felt, even though people were questioning it because maybe it’s seen as something that’s not been a huge success, to put that burden on someone, Tammy seemed the right personality to take that. Fortunately to this point he’s shown that he can

2019 12 04 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard hails ‘legend’ John Terry on Stamford Bridge return] It was a bit strange, I’ve been there myself last year - it is difficult. You are professional and want to do your job but it is not easy. I’m glad John had his moment here and got his applause. John was very humble, didn’t want to make a big deal about it, but he’s a legend, the most decorated captain the club has ever had, and he deserved it.

I thought we were great today. I’m pleased because that was us again, we had a blip against West Ham and today we were back. Our character at half-time was important and we carried off where we left off. The disappointment of the day is we didn’t score two or three. Villa are stubborn, have picked up results on the road and you can see why. They have good players and are well organised

2019 12 05 Retrieve

[Abraham injury fears calmed as Chelsea boss Lampard hails value of 12-goal top scorer] It doesn’t seem too bad in there, so I’m presuming that he’s alright

[Lampard added on an academy graduate who has quickly become a talismanic presence in the senior ranks at Stamford Bridge] He’s a personality that’s growing in our dressing room every day with his enthusiasm and his will to win. Tammy is a striker that’s near the top of the goalscoring charts in the league, he’s showing his all-round game, stretches defences, and he starts our press. And of course if a player’s on such a good run it’s normal that if they go out of the team that you can miss them, and today he came straight back in as he left off

[Lampard admits to still being unsure as to when Ruben Loftus-Cheek will come back into contention] He’s had a few setbacks over the last two months. He hasn’t had a new one [injury], but he’s not flying along as much as we would want, and it’s not for the want of trying from everybody. For Ruben himself of course there’s nothing worse than being injured. But at the moment he’s no closer to being fit

2019 12 06 Retrieve

[When quizzed on his plans for the New Year] It is what it is. Now we know. The club was working towards this and it’s a positive outcome. We can look forward and it’s good from a footballing point of view. We haven’t discussed it too much before the decision. Now it’s a discussion we can take up. I’m not going to go down too many lines. We will see where we are. In terms of the bigger picture it is constantly fluid

[Pressed further on whether transfer plans have already been discussed] I haven’t had that conversation. The fact that people have given us credit, that has to go to the group. I want more and to be higher up the table. If there is a chance to strengthen, then we will look at it

[The winter window is a notoriously difficult one to navigate] It’s a challenge, yeah. The one thing I felt that when you come into a club, sometimes players you bring in is key to that. Going forward it is something that I will bring to the club. It won’t just be myself. I have a very open discussion with Marina Granovskaia. It will be a challenge and hopefully we will get it right. When Roman Abramovich came in the landscape changed and it made me stand up and want to be better than those coming in. We want a competitive squad. I see the squad as 20+ and if players come in or leave it is a vision of where we want to go

[Lampard is, however, keen to keep his cards close to his chest when it comes to possible targets] It depends on the player. We have to keep the balance of the squad and it has to feel right. It doesn’t matter if it’s January, July or not.

2019 12 06b Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea won’t abandon youth movement after transfer ban reversal] [Fans] won’t lose that feeling for the young players because they’re here to stay. And the young players beneath that, if they train well enough and show enough then they’ll get their opportunities too. I don’t think there’s any problem with that. If we’re going to try [to make signings] it will be for the improvement of the squad - but if you think we’re going to line up Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham, Reece James and sell them, we’re not. They’re here to stay so the fans will be happy that they can keep that relationship and know that anything we do going forward now will be to try and improve from that base. [We need to consider] the attitude and personality of people we bring in, because we want people who come in to want to work hard and be successful at the club. So that’s where the balance of it becomes really important to me

[Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho, Leicester City’s Ben Chilwell and Genk’s Sander Berge are among the players the Blues are eyeing] Now that we know, starting from today there will be conversations had. We have a scouting department - we have people working on this all the time, whether the ban was here or not. It’s not now everyone will just run to their computers and start Googling the best players we can buy! We’re always ready to move forward so it’s part of the big picture. It’s the club’s decision, of course. As I mentioned before, I have a really good relationship with the owner and with Marina [Granovskaia, transfer director]. I respect that relationship on their side and I respect what Roman Abramovich has done for this club because I’m part of it. Without him, I wouldn’t have a lot of the things that I’ve done in the game. I just put forward my case on a working level of what I think will improve us and, hopefully, we’ll make the move from there. But I’m respectful of how the club works.

Every big team buys. In the competitive nature of the Premier League and where we’re at, look at what Manchester United have spent in recent years and Manchester City, and now Tottenham last summer - and Arsenal. But at the moment we have managed to utilise a lot of hard work that has gone into the academy over the last 15 or so years and that’s great to see that coming through in one go. That’s changed our picture slightly but we still want to improve if the opportunities are there

2019 12 07 Retrieve

[Lampard fumes at Chelsea & says they didn’t match Everton’s physicality] We gave them three goals. I suppose the first goal will be seen as a good goal from their point of view but we know Richarlison’s good in the air, he scores a lot of goals and we didn’t deal with it. Then when you give Everton that goal to hang on to, we gave ourselves a problem.

We didn’t create enough chances and we didn’t want to shoot enough, we dribble into their box and we try and beat someone else. We need to shoot more. And then the other two goals were just really poor from our point of view. You dominate a game with possession, you play a team that play with a lot of fighting spirit in the moment when they’re fighting for their interim manager and for themselves and we’ve got to do more.

I think we matched them on the work rate. Work rate is one thing, I expect us to match everyone in this league on that, but sometimes physical contact is another. So if you’re not going to win headers or balls that bounce down and you’re not going to go through the ball and the man a little bit then at places like Goodison, especially, it’s going to be really hard to come and win

We can’t defend like that. If there is evidence in a game, in one little package, that shows how far we still need to go, I think it was today. We got in their box so many times and score one goal in the game. They get in our box a few times, but through our own sloppiness they scored

2019 12 07b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard, Duncan Ferguson’s opposite number on Saturday, was left fuming with Chelsea’s defensive frailties, convinced all three terrible goals were gifts] We always knew they were going to have a go and they’ve got good players, they’re just in a slightly false position for whatever reason. I’m more worried about us. It wasn’t good enough from us, conceding three terrible goals from our point of view. We know Richarlison is good in the air on crosses and the last thing you want is to go one down early here, then they can be organised and make things very difficult for you. We got in their box so many times and [were] not getting shots away, trying to walk it in at times, so [there were] lots of things I wasn’t happy with.

2019 12 08 Retrieve

[Lampard pointed out after Saturday’s dismal 3-1 defeat at Everton] If anyone thought this year would be a breeze, we’d win six, seven or eight games on the bounce, that was misguided. They were very happy to give us all the ball. When we gave away a third goal late on, we gave ourselves a problem. Some of the goals were really poor

[Lampard felt his players lacked desire] You dominate a game with possession. But when you play a team with a lot of spirit and in a moment in which they are fighting for the interim manager (Duncan Ferguson) and themselves, you have got to do more than we did. Work rate is one thing and I expect them to match everyone on that front. But sometimes physical contact is another. So, if you are not going to win headers, balls are going to bounce down and you are not going to go through the man and the ball at places like Goodison, it is going to be really tough to win here. It was a really poor mistake from us [on the third goal]. Kepa passes it straight to Theo [Walcott] and after that there were two more mistakes. We can’t defend like that. If ever there was a game that shows how far we need to go, then it was today

[Lampard accuses Pulisic, Willian and Mason Mount not being brave enough. Tammy Abraham wasn’t beyond reproach, after failing to trouble Michael Keane and Mason Holgate, a central defensive pairing that has struggled all season long] In the first half, we created a lot of chances but we don’t want to shoot enough. We dribble into their box and we try to beat someone else – we need to shoot more

2019 12 08b Retrieve

[Lampard: It is time for ‘home truths’ after poor week for Chelsea] Hurt is not the word. I want to win. If I was here smiling and saying how well we played you would think I was crazy. We should be better than that. There are home truths all the time, whatever game you play. The players need to consistently hear that. We have got a good bunch and good group in there. In the Premier League, the competitive nature of it, there are going to be times where you have difficult patches or you lose games. It is certainly not the end of the world, but it is important that we take on board the lessons of games like today and West Ham. We have had a week where we were poor, fantastic and poor again. That lack of consistency is not going to get us where we want to be

They have to get used to it quickly. You can give them a tiny bit of room maybe for the fact of the youth of some of the team, but at the same time they might be young but they are not silly. They know that physical contact happens in games like this. Games get broken up, balls go direct into you box. It is another thing to deal with it better. There are teams who play that way. They all knew it was coming. We are not slight physically, especially if you look at our centre-backs and Tammy [Abraham] up front, for instance. We should have been aware

2019 12 09 Retrieve

[When asked for an update on Rudiger’s condition] Potentially [it will be] difficult [for him] but our guard against that was to give him a lot of work. We’ve managed to create some things behind the scenes here in training that look like matchplay. He’s done some pure running as well to be fair and he’s come through all that. You can only speak as you look at him and he looks fit and ready to go. I know he’s hungry. In terms of building him up, probably rightly so. He’s a good defender. I think maybe people have overlooked the fact that we had… everybody spoke about youth at the start of the season, all these things and transfer bans. The idea that we started with five big players all injured for a period of time and carrying on that now, Rudi is back and Ruben [Loftus-Cheek] is a big player for us as well. You do miss those individuals so let’s see what he can add to us now

The other news I suppose is that Fikayo Tomori is out. He’s got a small tiny strain around his hip area and it’s been bothering him so I’ve taken him out for a few days

2019 12 09b Retrieve

[Lampard wary of ‘reactionary’ spending at Chelsea after seeing transfer ban lifted] You have to be careful not to be too reactionary. Ban lifted, lose at Everton it might be easy to come to that conclusion. As much as at the start of the season that we have got these young boys, we don’t need anyone. As a club like Chelsea there has to be a balance. We have a strong squad, but we have to look at can we strengthen? There will be times going forward, whether it’s January or next summer there will be times and opportunities to strengthen. You do learn as you go along with the players, every day in training and at games but it certainly hasn’t changed my mindset right now

2019 12 09c Retrieve

[Lampard says Chelsea’s youngsters must step up in vital Champions League clash] I like that this is a knockout, we are going to be at our best. It is a big game, almost like a knockout game. We have wanted more in our home games. When you score early in the game it changes the face of the game. When you play well but don’t score you add the pressure yourselves

[Lampard is not concerned by his side’s form and is glad to have a chance to make an instant response against Lille] It was always going to come. The way we are, the nature of the Premier League. It was never going to be plain sailing. This is a test. It’s a tight turnaround, but that is the nature of the season. There is work you can do and working out there. I am pleased we’re playing

2019 12 10 Retrieve

[Chelsea to look for Hazard replacement as Lampard makes transfer plans] I think it will be a bit fluid. There will be discussions that go on from now about where we can strengthen, because of course with Eden leaving we lost a lot of goals, a lot of creation in his particular position. What I’m talking about today is that we missed some chances and I think we can probably look at strengthening and pushing and getting maybe more competition in those areas

With the youth, we understand those bumps in the road will come, whether individually or collectively. I push them a lot, I’m quite tough with them, and I want them to work and improve. But at the same time, you do have to be a bit patient. That’s where the balance of the team and the squad is important – the older, more experienced players do help them. We have got a good balance but I think today was a strong sign of how much work we have to do. It should have been a game that was finished much earlier. It’s been a little bit the story of our season at times and that’s the biggest thing, for me, we need to improve

2019 12 10b Retrieve

[The Blues boss conceded his side did show signs of nerves on Tuesday against Lille, where they needed a win to progress] It did get twitchy. We need to take our chances better. At 2-0 I thought it was not quite done and when Lille scored it made it a more nervy finish to the game than it needed to be.

It’s going to be a work in progress. With the young players we have in this side there will be bumps in the road. I push them and can be quite hard on them, setting the high standards I want to see them reach, but at the same time I have to be patient.

Today was a sign of how much work we still have got to do. It should have been a calmer finish to the game and that is the biggest thing, for me, that we need to improve

2019 12 11 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes Carlo Ancelotti has the ability coach any side in the world after Napoli sacked the experienced Italian on Tuesday] I have huge respect for him, I am very sorry for him. I know it was a tough job for him lately. I saw his interview before the game and I thought it was a very typically classy interview in what seemed a very tough time for him. He always handles himself brilliantly. I think he can work anywhere in the world at the top level, of course

2019 12 13 Retrieve

[More from Frank Lampard, who has some nice words about Jurgen Klopp] Liverpool are a huge rival now. Recruitment, their style of play, what Jurgen Klopp has built over a period of a few years is incredible. So congratulations on the new contract, it’s fully deserved that’s for sure. I love going up against the managers of the quality and name of Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola, you go through the Premier League there’s so many great managers here. So I’m pleased, I’m not disappointed, the challenge for us is can we bridge the gap to Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp or no Jurgen Klopp. But congrats on his new contract

[He’s asked if Chelsea are fighting for fourth spot with Manchester United and Spurs but isn’t having the somewhat lazy presumption that Liverpool, Leicester and Manchester City are locked in for the top three places] I think probably Liverpool I would agree with you but the rest is up for grabs. Huge respect to Leicester for what they’ve done so far but there’s a long way to go for all of us. I don’t think we were very fancied [to make the top four] at the start of the season and it’s important that we carry on trying to prove people wrong with our performances

2019 12 13b Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says he expects to see a lot more from Christian Pulisic] More, a lot more. I have just mentioned there about conversion of chances. I think Pulisic gets himself in so many good positions with his talent and his dribbling ability that I think more goals will be the next stage of that. I’m really pleased with him. I have asked a lot of him. He has played a lot of games recently, back to back, in a new league that we know is very physical for him. I am asking a lot, he has done very well. But I expect a lot more

2019 12 13c Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard addresses Wilfried Zaha, Ben Chilwell & Nathan Ake links] We want the top calibre of player that can improve us. I won’t even hone in on those three. I have said it over the last couple of weeks. I am happy with the squad but we have to improve if we can. It is not just my business, in the modern day since I have been in management and at most clubs it is a joint-effort. We have a scouting system, the board and myself. I can put forward a lot and we will work together. I will recommend players that can improve us, fit with the style and the way we want to go and come in really hungry. I want people who come here wanting to win and to be a Chelsea player

[Chelsea did include a buy-back clause in Ake’s deal] I don’t know how clever it is. It is what it is. I think Nathan came through here and when he has gone to Bournemouth to be able to play regular football, I think he has done fantastically well. He has shown himself as a really good defender in the Premier League

2019 12 13d Retrieve

[Lampard explains Chelsea transfer process] I have had very open conversations with (Chelsea director) Marina (Granovskaia) which is speaking to the owner as far as I’m concerned. I can speak to either of those, but mainly Marina. And the scouting department, and Petr Cech. And of course I sit with my staff daily for hours, we talk about the team and how we can improve and of course at some points, you start thinking about the longer-term future. The conversations have been very open to this point so I am happy with it. But of course, we haven’t bought anyone. If I say I want Kylian Mbappe, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for my front three I might get knocked back! I wouldn’t say that, but it’s a balance where I can put forward a recommendation and have an open conversation with the owner and hope we move forward in the right direction. I’m very open about that. My biggest thing here is how hard can we work on the training ground because I know we have a good squad, that’s my main concern. Of course, when it comes to recruitment, I want to have a big say in it and we are very open

I haven’t banned the talk but I am not going to set out to engage in it. If players want to come and see me and talk then I will happily have a conversation with them individually but that hasn’t happened. I think the thing with the young players. I haven’t felt the need to have that conversation. I speak to them regularly. I can be, not hard on them, but I push them and drive them if I can in training because I think they need that but, I do think they feel the trust I have in them because with all of them they know I’m prepared to give them the opportunities and chances if they train well and they come in the team and play well, so I haven’t needed to have the conversation about who may come in. I think they should naturally feel a little bit of tension all the time so that’s not the worst thing. They also just need to work and believe in their own talents because their talent is there for all to see and we have to be patient with that because it may take different periods of time for them to fully blossom as players. [There] might be a period in and out of the team, have a run of the games and then not. I am prepared to stick with them through that because I really believe in them.

If I start to look at where I can strengthen the squad, it’s certainly not going to be a slant on the young players or anything. I think we all here have seen this summer and what’s happened here since the summer that the idea of going into the academy and giving these boys a chance is a really good one because they have deserved it. They haven’t been getting that so much in the past so I do think maybe we have changed our minds a little bit on that one, Of course, we do need to stay competitive, that will never change but people have been very pleased to see that and I certainly am. I think that is the balance and in an ideal world, that’s what you have. We now from investment and time spent in the academy that was always the desire you want players to come through it helps you in terms of producing yourself and then at the same time whatever your club is striving you want to bring in players around that so that’s the clear balance we are looking for

2019 12 14 Retrieve

[Lampard said after his team misfired against West Ham two weeks ago] I think it will be a bit fluid and discussions will be ongoing from now about where we can strengthen. Of course, with Eden leaving, we lost a lot of goals and creation in that particular position. We’ve missed some chances and we can look at strengthening and pushing and getting more competition in those areas

I’m a Chelsea man and I will be the first one to say the fans were flat today and we needed them. I would be the first, but today I’m never going to say that because if I’m a fan sitting there today, I’d also say ‘pfft, too slow’. Centre-back to centre-back, full-back to full-back, back to centre-back, back to full-back and I don’t want to come and see that. So I won’t blame the fans, they come here to support the team, they will come to Tottenham next week, they will come to Southampton on Boxing Day and some responsibility is on the players to excite them, to have the personality and the balls to take the ball in an area and beat someone or play forwards. That’s up to the players as well, so that’s a joint thing

2019 12 14b Retrieve

[Lampard doesn’t want to manage ‘safe’ Chelsea as Blues fail to excite once more] I don’t know about fear but in front of our own fans it’s clear now we aren’t playing well enough and getting enough results. Up until now I think a lot of it – and I said this after Lille – was we’re not taking enough chances because we’re creating a lot and we’re giving away some silly goals. Today wasn’t a ‘we’re creating loads of chances day’, we created two or three great chances and we need to take them if we want to improve, but today we just didn’t get the fans excited enough. The fans shouldn’t be excited if we’re going to play 10 balls across our back four. They shouldn’t be. I think that’s not the team I want to manage

I don’t blame the fans. I’m a Chelsea man and I will be the first one to say the fans were flat today and we needed them. I would be the first, but today I’m never going to say that because if I’m a fan sitting there today, I’d also say ‘pfft, too slow. Centre-back to centre-back, full-back to full-back, back to centre-back, back to full-back and I don’t want to come and see that’. So I won’t blame the fans, they come here to support the team, they will come to Tottenham next week, they will come to Southampton on Boxing Day and some responsibility is on the players to excite them, to have the personality and the balls to take the ball in an area and beat someone or play forwards

[Lampard now has to find a way of getting Chelsea back on track] Urgency in our play. If you’re transferring the ball, transfer it quickly from side to side. If you’re playing through the lines because that’s the kind of player you are, get it through the lines. If you’re an attacking player get at people, do things that are positive, don’t play safe. We played generally too safe during the game

[He admits that some harsh lessons are being handed out, but claims to have expected that to happen] I’m disappointed but I think I got asked at all these press conferences when we were winning on the bounce about how good we were and how quickly it’s all changed. I was always guarded against that. Whether I’ve been proven right or whatever, the best way to put that is now we have the reality, that if we’re not at our best, if we haven’t got enough to break teams down that are organised, if players with their individual quality and personality can’t do something to beat teams that are organised, then we need to find another way. That’s a test and that’s hard work needed for us

2019 12 15 Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea’s players need to take responsibility in front of goal] I don’t think that’s a training ground thing. It is more an on-pitch thing because there is talent in that room that can break a low block with a certain pass, a moment. Firstly, you want to take that moment and take it on and not be safe.

Secondly, you have to execute it. Today we didn’t do both enough. I think you can work towards it with how you coach, with how you speak to the players and how you trust in them but the final deal is what goes out on the pitch there today. So a lot of that is what we do out there. I don’t want to isolate their bravery because we have to be a collective and a group. On a day like today, you have to have players who can break that moment. The whole stadium felt it was a slightly flat day so you say, okay, the responsibility is on the players.

Today, we spent a lot of time in their half, in the first half, particularly. It is in attacking areas of the pitch [where we need that magic]. We know we concede a lot and that’s probably the nature of the Premier League in the modern-day. You even look at Liverpool who are flying but they haven’t kept many clean sheets themselves at times. That’s maybe how it is slightly but we need to score more. That’s for sure. Going into this game, it was clear that we are creating far too many chances that we are not taking

Yes, maybe. I think that a little bit of fatigue can be part of the picture and we will look at that behind the scenes. Probably more for training, a long week. We have had a spell now of game after game after game. Sometimes that feels good when you are winning consistently. Now we have had difficult results so it might be good for us to go over some things on the training pitch

2019 12 20 Retrieve

[Lampard determined to beat former mentor Mourinho when Chelsea take on Tottenham] I think it will be special. I think it will make a difference to me, I think it will make a difference to him. We’re both professionals, we’re driven, and sometimes when you come across someone you worked with or a club that you worked with, it pushes you on that little bit more in the best possible way. And it’s Tottenham-Chelsea, that game has enough anyway. And then you have Jose Mourinho there. And he’s going to be desperate to beat us, let’s make no bones

[When asked directly if recording a win against Mourinho would be an extra sweetener to go along with three points] In my professional head, yes. I want to go up against the best. When I’ve gone up against Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp this season, of course, you want to say: ‘Can I show against these incredible managers what I can do, what my team can do?’. So it will be a similar feeling

[Lampard added on Tottenham being capable of a top-four finish with Mourinho at the wheel] I think his personality – and his record – is something that needs to be in top-level football. So having Jose back is obviously going to mix it right up in the Premier League. We know the record that Jose has as a winning manager, he’s won wherever he’s been. He’s come into a club, and a squad, that were probably tipped to be somewhere in the title race at the beginning of the season. They had a difficult start, but they still have those players. So with the freshness of Jose Mourinho, of course, they’re going to be challengers for sure for the top four

2019 12 20b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard plays down rivalry with Mourinho] The problem with this is it’s not the me and Jose show. It’s a game against Tottenham. I want to beat him. I respect him and know what a top manager he is. He wants to beat me because he used to manage Chelsea, he used to manage me, and now he’s managing Tottenham and wants to beat us

I would always have big respect for all my managers. If I was to text or ring a manager, I’d always call them boss or gaffer. Even long gone. When you go up against someone like that, influential, I knew it was different. It was a good honour to go up against him, but I wanted to beat him. It would be strange to call him boss now. Now I am an ex-player, on this side of the fence, I won’t be calling him boss. But that doesn’t take away from the respect I have for him. If you go to the fiercest rivals, the fans will give the answer. That doesn’t mean they’ve forgotten the history or don’t respect it. Jose Mourinho is a manager who wants to work. He took that opportunity. Mourinho won’t be too concerned about that, either. Look at the times he’s come back with United, it did look like [he doesn’t care]. We know it’s a huge rivalry. Probably, in my era, it became the biggest of the London derbies. It felt like that in the stadia and on the pitch. So possibly it is. Any rivalry, any local derby, ups the ante slightly. I remember that feeling, that eagerness to win and desperation not to lose. That’s how we all feel about it.

There’s no better person for Tammy Abraham to look up to in football than Harry Kane. Harry Kane is the all-round No. 9. If not the best then close to being the best in the world. He should look up to that. I know he does and is trying to take up the work ethic Harry has to try and be the best in the world. He will be different, but he can go really, really far following that kind of model

[Kane’s work ethic and desire have been cited as key attributes in his rise to become one of the world’s best strikers] From the outside, he does remind me of myself. He’s maximised every bit of his talent, or is maximising it. He’s a driven boy, family man, wants to work and eke every bit out of his career. I have huge respect for him. We’ll be rivals on Sunday, but we have huge respect for him

2019 12 20c Retrieve

[Quizzed on what he has taken from experiences working under one of the finest tacticians in the modern game] Not (just) one thing. Mourinho is a good manager. I am not trying to be a clone of anything. I am happy to go up against Jose, it was a big deal last year. I have big respect for him. The big thing is Chelsea vs Spurs, it is what the rivalry means to my players

They had a fantastic manager in (Mauricio) Pochettino, that made them a big challenge for everyone in the Premier League. It is always a competitive fixture

[Just two victories have been taken from seven games across all competitions] There have been some positives and you can’t get caught up in the negatives. We are in fourth position. Of course, we know we can do better, but we just want to keep moving forward

[Lampard has been freed to spend after seeing a transfer embargo lifted, but he is keeping his recruitment cards close to his side] I am not going to divulge too much now

2019 12 20d Retrieve

[How Mourinho-like is Lampard and does the Chelsea boss still like the Tottenham manager?] I try to be myself; I think that’s very important. Copying anyone as a manager is a mistake. You have to find your own methods or your own ways. I certainly have no fear of tapping into a bit of the managers that I have worked with over the years, but I don’t think I’m similar to any of them. I try to take positive points from a lot of people I worked with. In terms of how I work, you have to be reactionary in games, but I try to take things in throughout the week and get all the information to be as prepared as I can be and thorough with the staff that I’ve got. Then, make decisions having done that work, which I think gives you the best opportunity to have success.

[It felt like a semblance of revenge, particularly as it was Mourinho who had said of Lampard’s move to the Etihad] When he decided to go to a direct competitor, then love stories are over

[In his role as a pundit on Sky Sports, Mourinho had deemed the Blues ‘too soft’ and criticised Mason Mount for his debut display] He didn’t like the performance of Mason Mount? Is that what he said? Did he? Wow! Well, I can’t drag players out of the medical room to play, so these are the players that played in a game in which we were clearly the better team for 45 to 60 minutes

2019 12 21 Retrieve

[When asked if the sale of Hazard puts more pressure on Pulisic and Willian] It does and not just them, Mateo Kovacic is one to mention as well because he’s taken up all of those roles and been really good for us this year. The biggest gripe we would have with ourselves is that if you look at our season, in lots of games, we see a lot of the ball and have control in certain games. Then you look at how clinical you were in certain areas where football is won and lost. We’ve been giving away goals we’re not happy with at times, but I think in modern Premier League football, it’s getting harder to keep clean sheets. If we are creating and getting balls into the box, the longer you don’t take those chances, you give the other team the feeling that they’re in the game and I think that’s part of the reason for the recent losses that we’ve had

[Lampard admits that Chelsea can make life easier for themselves by becoming more ruthless in the final third] Yeah, without a doubt. I wouldn’t say it’s a hard thing to coach, I’m not taking it away from myself, but we do a lot of work on finishing and the player I was, my thing was repetition and practise is the only thing that’s going to make me score on Saturday. I felt like practice made me lucky and made me better. In this period, we do have to relentlessly push. Can we be clinical? Man City is a perfect example of our season on the negative side because you go 1-0 up against one of the best teams in the country, felt like we were really in charge of the game, had another one or two decent chances and 2-0 makes it a completely different game. Then they score, and talk about making my own luck, [Kevin] De Bruyne scores off a deflection and then we go 2-1 down at half time and then it’s a really difficult match. You come away from it saying we played well but we didn’t win, that’s not what we want to be but that’s part of the process as well

2019 12 21b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard: Mourinho taught me how to bond with young players] I suppose when you say is there anything I take from Jose, maybe my answer could have been and should have been that when he first came to Chelsea, I had played under different managers. Harry Redknapp was my uncle, so that relationship was there, but he was the first manager that day-to-day made me feel really close to him. We worked on the mental side without working on it; it was just this confidence that he gave me which forms a bond. He did form a bond with me. Working with the younger players that we have here now, it is my duty to try and form my bond with them. They are at the start of their journey and career. They need to look up to, not just myself, but the staff and know what it takes to get to where they want to be, so if I can form that bond with the players [then it is good]. I love all the young boys here; they are all really good players so I try to do that

It is just a constant. It is a constant with how you are with them every day. How much you want to work with them on the training ground. How much you want to maybe sometimes delve into their personal lives, have a word about it and make sure that they are OK. I think all those things where they feel comfortable with the way they interact with you is huge. I think that’s a line you have to make sure you get right and I like to think I do. But, you would have to ask the players that. It is not like I am hanging about with them playing PlayStation and stuff! I do draw the line somewhere

It made me feel great, it made me feel great. Moments like that, it becomes very easy as you get older to not jump back into the 24-year-old’s head and understand what things like that make them feel. It doesn’t have to be you are the best player in the world but it is positive talking in some ways about where they want to get to with an overlying edge about the way you work every day. When Jose said that to me, it wasn’t like I went and did step-overs all day. It was drive, drive, drive and to try to be that and win titles. It was a really well-put message, so yes, I would try to do that with players. His imprint on the squad and what he did to us in his time at the club us was huge, of course! He took a very talented team that came second the year before that was bursting as a club to win the title and he played a massive part in that. We won back-to-back titles in a fantastic way and, of course, as manager he takes huge credit

2019 12 22 Retrieve

[Lampard defends Rudiger from Mourinho jibe] In some countries, like mine, for example with our culture we used to say clever player. But in this country, and one of the reasons I fell in love with this country in 2004, we don’t call them clever, we call them other things that I refuse to call

It was a red card. I don’t know how much he’s supposed to make out of it. I think Son is a great player and, I don’t know him, from the outside he looks like a great person. But sometimes in football you have instinctive moments. It happened, it was a bit of a reflex. Maybe sometimes in a game where you’re having it really tough and it’s going against you a little bit and I think it was that [type of] moment. I will not have any words said about how Toni Rudiger dealt with that

[Lampard insisted his respect for Mourinho remains undimmed] I think to go up against a manager who I respect so much from my playing days and for what he’s done in the game and win, that obviously feels good. He spoke before the game about how he really loves me but he wants to beat me. That’s completely understandable and that’s how I went into this game. It should never change that, even if we have anything on the line in the heat of the 90 minutes, which we didn’t. What Jose has done with his career and what he’s done for me as a player means I have respect for him

2019 12 22b Retrieve

[Jose Mourinho says Chelsea triumphed thanks to Conte’s midfield system] Conte’s system? No, it didn’t factor at all. I don’t know if I want to go through all the players, but I am sure half of the players on the pitch weren’t there. I know Tomori wasn’t, Mason Mount wasn’t, Tammy Abraham. I’m not trying to clone anyone’s system. In fact, I think Conte’s system was an incredible one that won the league with Chelsea. The way we play and the message I give is different. It is not as simple that if you play 4-3-3 that you are cloning someone else, otherwise you are all cloning each other. It was more, ‘Can this be a system that helps us defensively and offensively against Tottenham?’ The way they play. That was my choice to play it, not whether players understand it. Having said that the players took the plan on incredibly well

2019 12 22c Retrieve

[Lampard has been strong on racism this season with another incident involving Kurt Zouma with his own fans also coming in August] All I know is that Toni Rudiger said he heard a racist chant towards him. I haven’t had an individual conversation with Toni. I have only addressed the group and a couple of the lads in doping. Of course I am going support Toni, as we would support any of our players or opposition players if this happens, whatever stadium it happens at. It needs to be dealt with. As I don’t know any more than that, we will wait for the process to happen

2019 12 22d Retrieve

[Lampard excited for Bayern test] It’s a tough draw, but a good draw. We knew that when we get through the group stages, you’re generally in with some big teams and we have certainly drawn one. We have history with them, of course, but these will be games in themselves that will be very testing. We will be ready for the challenge

2019 12 22e Retrieve

[Lampard says win over rivals Tottenham ‘means a lot’] It means a lot to me but it’s about the club and the fans. The fans have come here after a number of losses and they have backed us. They know we are a young team and what we are trying to achieve. My players showed they could fight and play against a top team, because Tottenham are a good team. Today we were everything that’s why we should be celebrating. We are not over excited but we are pleased with the performance. They are a major rival and it shows the players what they can do under pressure and what they need to do to survive in games. You cannot fault their commitment. When you play with a three at the back, it’s not easy - especially here. You have to be brave and they are all that

[Lampard believes Tottenham were lucky not to have another player sent off in the build up to Chelsea’s second goal] I think the penalty should have been a red card, he has flown at him. I don’t think he means to do it so I can understand why it is not, it is probably fair. The Son incident was a red card, he acted out and that is a red card no matter how hard.

2019 12 23 Retrieve

[Lampard opted to try a new 3-4-3 formation against Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham, with the hope that the inclusion of an extra centre-back would help to keep the likes of Harry Kane, Son Heung-min, Lucas Moura and Dele Alli quiet] The way we play it and the message I give is different. It was more, can this be a system that helps us defensively and offensively against Tottenham, with the way they play? It was my choice to play it, not to do with whether the players understand it. The players took the plan on incredibly well, as we all saw. Watching Tottenham, they’re playing very well, they have a lot of players who can run behind and cause you problems: Son, Kane, Alli, Moura. Having an extra centre-back gives you an element of protection against that, particular with the athletic centre-backs we have. They never got in on that pass today

[Lampard added on his decision to push Mount and Willian further forward] The most important factor in my thinking was what it could give us offensively, in terms of controlling possession. Tottenham defended quite compact, we needed to use the width of the pitch and wing-backs help you do that. We haven’t been clinical enough lately, and it allowed us to get Mason Mount and Willian slightly inside behind Tammy. We had an element of protection the way it worked. Also, it allowed us to have loads of control of the ball. I’m so pleased with how it went

2019 12 23b Retrieve

[Conte was almost too wedded to 3-4-3 at Chelsea, Maurizio Sarri was fully committed to 4-3-3 and, for Lampard, he will use a combination of the two] Yes, possibly [we will use it more]. Today, we know Tottenham play a lot of balls in behind. They go longer sometimes, can run and they are quick and dangerous so an extra centre-back was always going to work with that, you hope. In terms of keeping the ball, Tottenham we know are defensively very good but we wanted to use the sides of the pitch to open up the game. That takes a bit of bravery and confidence to come here and play, play, play like we did. We will see going forward. I think sometimes there’s an argument to play it. Sometimes we say do we need an extra defender? That’s for us going forward, so we will see

2019 12 24 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard disappointed by Mourinho’s criticism of Antonio Rudiger’s integrity following Son Heung-min red card] With Toni and this incident and he is having to post about a huge deal, to question him is disappointing. what I heard and post-match the Son challenge was a red card. Not a brutal one, but a red card. I wouldn’t question Toni’s integrity on that. There were a couple of incidents that Tottenham players went over in the box to try to win a penalty

[Lampard went on to praise Rudiger for speaking from the heart after being targeted by racist supporters] I spoke to him briefly after the game. The lads were off yesterday. I saw his social media post. I thought it was well put and from the heart. I will speak to him this morning. I would like to think the players know I am behind them on this

[Lampard hopes the performance will serve as confidence boost for his side as they negotiate their way through the rest of the festive period] I think it was [a boost]. Going to Tottenham, in good form with the character, fight and strength we showed makes it the best performance. I hope it helps them. For the young ones, there is a bit of a mixture. Hopefully, within the group the result gives us confidence

2019 12 24b Retrieve

[Lampard aims De Bruyne & Salah dig at Mourinho when promising patience with Chelsea youngsters] If we’re not patient and we don’t stick with the players then you might be in a situation where we have been before, where top world-class players have been at Chelsea when they were 20 or 21, but the managers maybe didn’t stick with them so much then. I’m in a position where I’m going to stick with them

[Lampard added on the back of a 2-0 derby victory over Spurs which saw Chelsea blend youth and experience once again] I hope the win helps the whole squad, and the younger players in particular. Some were in the Championship last year, some are getting new tests they’ve never had before this season, but some have been here before, beaten top-six teams and won championships over the years. There is a little bit of a mixture, but as a group we are quite fresh and a little bit transitional this year, and hopefully it sends a little statement to ourselves. I don’t mind how everyone outside reacts about it, but for ourselves it should give us confidence. I wasn’t of the belief they couldn’t give a reaction. I believe in these players, and the young players

Mason Mount’s performance, not just to isolate Mason because Tammy and Tomori were fantastic, but his performance against Tottenham was a great example of why you want to stick with and have patience with these young players. He’s a young boy, there will be moments when a game will be difficult for him, and he’ll learn in the next one and better, and there will be games like the one on Sunday where you see the player he is

2019 12 24c Retrieve

[Lampard had no doubt that Son deserved the red card as he jumped to Rudiger’s defence] It was a red card. I don’t know how much he’s supposed to make out of it. I will not have any words said about how Toni Rudiger dealt with that

2019 12 26 Retrieve

[Lampard left frustrated as Chelsea’s home struggles continue in Southampton defeat] It felt the same as recent games. They were organised. We need to be better at breaking teams down. I think we have enough to be better than we were today. It needs to be a quick learning process now. When there is no space it’s a different question.

Teams are making it difficult here. We are not making enough chances, we were at the beginning of the season. We are being asked a different question at home. At the moment we are not answering them. We do not manage to pick up that final pass. Against Tottenham we had space to make runs and today we had none. It changes things. We did not do it right today. I think if at the start of the season we would have been happy where we are. We are good away but we have to make it difficult to come here

[With his side trailing 1-0 at half-time, Lampard replaced centre-back Kurt Zouma with midfielder Mason Mount, but the 20-year-old did not have the impact the coach had hoped for] It had a small impact but it did not change the result. Mason has been feeling rough the last few days. It brightened it a bit but not enough. We controlled the game but we are not getting anything in the box. It’s a testing period but we have to deal with that

2019 12 26b Retrieve

[Lampard confirms Chelsea in discussions with Willian over new contract] He’s in talks with the club. He speaks with the club on the money side of it. The experience helps when you have got a young team, when the other options are younger, experience certainly helps. All his team-mates love him - he’s a low-maintenance player to have in the squad; so yes I am really happy with him. He’s great for me, especially when he plays like he did the other day - it was an incredible performance

[Lampard was eager to get the most out of the ex-Shakhtar Donetsk man upon taking over as Chelsea head coach in July] He has that talent. I knew he had that talent before I got the job. If there was one thing I wanted from him at the start of the season it was a question of: ‘Can you score more goals because your talent says that you should do?’ That means sometimes running into space behind defenders, and getting the other side, and he is doing all those things. The last year or two I have looked at him from afar and wasn’t sure how much he was enjoying it, whether he felt happy in games. A bit of body language, in and out sometimes. My feeling at the start of the season was to tell him how much I feel about him and how I see him; get him fit, get him working off the ball because I know he can. And the rest in terms of what he does on the ball I can kind of let him do that, because he has this incredible ability to burst away from people

2019 12 26c Retrieve

[Lampard says Chelsea ‘need to make goals and score goals’ after Southampton loss] We beat Aston Villa here but that was wedged between West Ham and Bournemouth. Teams have obviously been organised, we wouldn’t expect any different. We control a lot of the ball, but we do not do enough with the ball around the box. I think it’s been the story for us for a while, not just in recent times. We need to get better because we need a better home record. What we need to do, the players on the pitch, whoever they are need to make goals and score goals. It’s the hardest thing to do in football. It’s a challenge for all of us. We knew this was not going to be easy road. We have found now that when teams make it difficult for us and do not give us space, we are finding it tough and so it clearly needs to improve. We need to tough it out and get over it quickly. Personality is a huge thing in football - you cannot let that beat you

2019 12 26d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Chelsea need to be more consistent if they hope to achieve their top-four ambitions] It’s a clear statement that you need a form of consistency to come in the top four because it’s the Premier League - everyone is striving for it. We are in it at Christmas; people would probably have doubted that, so I think from that perspective we can be relatively happy. But if we want to stay there we have to move onwards and upwards, rather than look backwards, we clearly need to win more than we have won recently at home

[Chelsea boss conceded it is after defeats when he will learn even more about his players] After Tottenham we were the greatest thing in the world, they were the greatest players and I was a great manager, and today it’s questioned. That’s when you see the strength of character of someone

2019 12 28 Retrieve

[Chelsea have not won a single point from losing positions this season] It was the same story [as those games]. Players have to go one-v-one if you’re an offensive player. Play around the corner, join in, mix up your game and break defensive lines because teams aren’t stupid, they are well organised and you need to do more in an attacking sense. You can’t have near on 70 per cent of possession and control - particularly the first half - and not do more. Not hit better crosses, not hit better final passes, not get more clear chances at goal from our point of view

[Lampard should also have a look at himself over his side’s lack of comebacks when he has the power to make game-changing substitutions] We have to be brutal with ourselves as well. It is all well and good feeling on top of the world after beating Tottenham but we need to reproduce it in different ways against different opposition in different games

2019 12 29 Retrieve

[Lampard laments ‘awful’ Chelsea first-half showing despite comeback win at Arsenal] We were so awful for 30 mins. Slow, lethargic, nervous. The opposite of against Tottenham [who Chelsea beat 2-0]. We gave Arsenal everything they wanted. We made the change early, felt it had to be done. Second half we dominated. From my point of view, you can accept a missed pass but you can’t accept lethargy in a London derby. The players were told that and they delivered. The second half was nothing to do with tactics; it was all to do with spirit and desire

After 10 minutes or so it was clear that Arsenal had seen us play against Tottenham and made it into a back five instead of a back three. They were on top and there was a lack of balance to our team. The sub gave us another man in midfield and gave us more urgency

[Chelsea have lost three of their last four Premier League games at Stamford Bridge, most recently against Southampton on Boxing Day] I still haven’t bounced back from Boxing Day mentally. In our next home games, we’ll do everything we can to turn the corner. We’re still in fourth and want more and the home games have been different, so we have to focus on them when they come around

2019 12 29b Retrieve

[Lampard confirms contract talks with Chelsea talent Lamptey] We’ll see. Tariq Lamptey’s talking with the club and hopefully he feels a bit of love from today as we’ve parachuted him in. He was actually on his Christmas break when we called him in yesterday. He trained and then played. I’d seen him when I was doing my coaching badges and you do a lot of hours with the academy and youth team. I saw him train a lot and I know he has a different dimension as a right-sided wing back. He has pace, low centre of gravity and can go by people. Of course he wants to work on his end product and all the last bits

My question to Jody when he came on was whether he had got the confidence and personality to deal with this, a tough game with responsibility to try and turn it. Jody said: ‘Yeah, no problem’. When he drove inside and slipped Tammy in I thought it was a great example of someone coming on and being fearless. Sometimes that’s what you get with youth

2019 12 29c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard knows new head coach Mikel Arteta will soon have to turn Arsenal’s fortunes around] I certainly found that it helps with knowing some faces behind the scenes, knowing the values, what the standards are and what the wants are. I think that can help probably in the early stages. I think after that, it probably levels out and your work is your work. No, [the honeymoon period] doesn’t [last forever] and it shouldn’t. But I’m sure fans will have a feeling for Arteta and want him to do well being one of their own

[Arteta is in his first head coaching position, but Lampard does not see his inexperience being a big factor given his work with Guardiola] He has worked under one of the greatest if not the greatest [managers] for a couple of years. I think you don’t know until you take the chance with somebody. Who’s to say a manager is better or worse if they are in their first or 50th year of management? He was a very good player - intelligent, technical. He seemed to be a leader, not a fist-pumping kind but a leader in whatever teams he was playing in. I think the years he’s had working with Guardiola put him in great stead. I don’t think the question mark will be that. I think it will be purely on Arteta, the quality of him, and can he get Arsenal to the position they want to be in? Now it’s his turn to make those decisions himself

2019 12 29d Retrieve

[Lampard: I’ll always respect David Luiz - he played in the Champions League final with half a hamstring] What I don’t want to do is look like it’s a personal question going into a game against a player I respect and played with. If you look at our defenders and the emergence of Tomori, that’s obviously been a big plus for us, but it was just a decision that was made and while I’m here I’ll be making countless more of those in different ways. I certainly wish David well when he leaves this club. He was part of a Champions League-winning team, played with half a hamstring in the final, I know that. [He] got himself fit when he was under pressure with the injury and I will always respect that

[Arteta has taken on his first head-coaching post with the Gunners and Lampard feels he was destined for the role] [He was] a very good player, a very intelligent player, very technical player. Seemed to be a leader, not a fist-pumping kind of leader, but a leader in whatever teams he was playing in. He looks like he could be well-suited to management. I do wish him well – obviously not on Sunday – but I wish him well because when you see a fresh manager come into a job like that, I understand the strains and the pressures of it and the desires to want to do well in it. On a personal level I wish him well

[Lampard feels Arteta’s grounding as Pep Guardiola’s assistant at Manchester City for three-and-a-half years has prepared him for his new job] He’s worked under one of the greatest, if not the greatest, for a couple of years there. He was always an intelligent player and now has worked for that. I don’t buy the whole ‘inexperienced’ one. I think you don’t know until you take the chance with somebody and who’s to say that managers are better or worse because they’re in their first or 50th year of management? I don’t buy it

2019 12 30 Retrieve

[Lampard gave another debut to an academy graduate in 19-year-old Tariq Lamptey against Arsenal and the Chelsea manager has admitted that talks with the young full-back are ongoing as his deal is due to expire in the summer of 2020] We’ll see. He’s talking with the club and hopefully he feels a bit of love from today as we’ve parachuted him in. He was actually on his Christmas break when we called him in yesterday. He trained and then played

2019 12 31 Retrieve

[Lampard says Chelsea must get recruitment right to compete with Liverpool] That has to be the aim. The transfer ban was one thing. It gave the staff a chance to look at the players, see what we have got and look at the youth. That has been good and the more and more I see us play and the good and the bad, you change your feelings about how you want to go forward but the endgame will always be the same.

Once we can start bringing players in and the young players start to hopefully mature and get better we want to bridge that gap to go up there. Whether we can do that next year, I don’t know. That will depend on the work we do and whether it hits home but I will certainly not leave any stone unturned in how I try to work to get us there. But there are too many variables. We have to get recruitment right, that will be a huge deal.

Not just who the individuals are that come in, but can they help influence the way we play and the way we want to play? I have got a clear idea of what that is, it didn’t look like the first 30 minutes against Arsenal, but we’ve shown at times this year that we’ve got a chance

[Lampard said that his side’s recruitment will be a collaborative effort, with several individuals key to Chelsea’s transfer business] We are joined up in terms that I have very close conversations with [Chelsea director] Marina [Granovskaia], very close conversations with Petr Cech and Scott [McLachlan] who is the head of our recruitment department. They know what I want and I will be fundamentally in the middle of who and what we bring into the club. As it stands, we are very open about that. If it feels right from my side on the footballing point in January, from the club side on the club point in January, then we will make the moves we make. It is a joint-up effort.

2019 12 31b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard defends Hudson-Odoi from social media criticism] Unfortunately with social media that is par for the course, it doesn’t make it right or wrong. I haven’t seen it but unfortunately that is something that you have to have a very thick skin about. I said it after the Southampton game, he is a young player, just 19, had a lot of talk about him for different reasons which is not all of his doing, there has been a big microscope on him and I think we actually do have to give him time and patience with how young he is.

I have got no problems with him, I thought he did well when he came on at Arsenal, that should be a nice little boost for him and I think Chelsea fans will be absolutely behind him. They want to see passion, they want to see all those things as well as the ability to go past people which he has got. He needs to understand what is needed and he is working on that constantly, I’ll back him and work with him on that. At 19 it is a lot to say that one performance, something where he plays the other day where he comes in after being out of the team, ‘you must produced instantly or you’ll get social media giving it to you’.

We have to be level-headed and I will certainly try and protect him against that. Little snippets like against Arsenal, coming on and looking bright, going past people and hitting cross-field passes. He needs to develop more but he absolutely has the talent to do a lot more. At 19 there are not too many that are playing in the Premier League every week, especially at a club like ourselves. He does have competition in those areas. His consistency needs to be how he works, how he trains every day and how much pressure he puts on me to play him and get into the team. That is one thing he will strive for but from all the conversations I have had with him in the last few weeks - and I have had a few - he understands what he needs to do on and off the pitch. I will certainly stick with him

[Chelsea have recently seen a run of niggling injuries take hold over the winter period] [For Pulisic], It is a small hamstring [problem]. I wouldn’t even call it an injury - after the Southampton game the lads did some strides and he felt cramp. He has trained at a low level; for me it was more precautionary against Arsenal. We need our wingers; we need him going into an important period. [Reece James is] hopefully a week or 10 days. He’s had a bit of a niggle around his ankle injury which he had surgery on in pre-season so that was a bit of a worry, the doctors are saying it will be a week or so. Alonso is similar; it is a back - top of the glute - kind of muscle injury. They are both in a similar boat, not terrible injuries but missing at a pretty crucial time. [Cesar Azpilicueta] felt it at Tottenham and came off towards the end, against Southampton he was feeling it during the game but with Reece James injured the options are less - he’s a fighter so he stayed on. But today he says that he felt better so fingers crossed it will be more precautionary

2020 01 01 Retrieve

[Lampard concerned by Chelsea’s lack of consistency after not being ‘ruthless’ in Brighton draw] It was frustrating for different reasons. In the first half, the game was there to be won. We weren’t ruthless enough. We got the goal and we had the possession. But we just didn’t kill the game off. We allowed them to stay in the game. In the end it was a wonder goal but we were lucky not to lose the game. In the end, the tactics matched up for both teams but they were better than us. We have to take that on the chin

[The lack of consistency] is a concern. It’s something we absolutely have to look at. We have to look at the game today. It’s a point, I’m not happy with the performance.

2020 01 01b Retrieve

[Lampard won’t talk about reported Chelsea target Wilfried Zaha and ‘hasn’t considered’ Giroud swap deal] I wouldn’t talk about Zaha and the idea of that deal is something I have never even considered. As I say I won’t talk about Zaha because he is not a player of ours. If we have to do business we will do it in the way we see fit to try and make us better and that’s behind closed doors as opposed to just announcing who we might want to bring in

2020 01 02 Retrieve

[Lampard’s side are impossible to predict] Tottenham was a fantastic all-round performance. ‘[At] Arsenal [we] showed great spirit and fight for a young group. Southampton, we struggled to break a team down and lost at home

Then today where we should have the mindset to kill it, because the opportunity was there in the first half, and we don’t. It shows the good and the bad of us. That shows we must remain humble. We must work hard. We’ve had two great results over Christmas but there’s a lot of work to do

[Are Chelsea ruthless finishers? Do they know what it takes to grind out a result? No and no. To get the next level, these players must learn it on the pitch. Lampard has spoken of it being a ‘process’ to educate his players to learn that elusive skill] It’s not that the mindset is there, it’s just how you work to try and win games, you have to deal with them in the game and that is part of the process

Sometimes you can accuse a bad period in a game of a lack of fight, lack of urgency, lack of whatever. Today wasn’t. It was a lack of quality on the ball so we had a situation in the first half when we knew the problem for them.

We could find our full-backs easily, keep control of the ball easily and we just decided not to keep doing that, not to keep doing the simple things. Then all of a sudden you’re giving the ball away and when you are getting opportunities to score, you’re not taking them and if you don’t do that at this level then you’re not going to win games that you should

2020 01 05 Retrieve

[Lampard issues Hudson-Odoi challenge after Chelsea FA Cup win] It was a good performance. I was pleased to see him high up the pitch, pleased to see him being aggressive in how he gets at people, which is what he is there for. He gets his goal with a great strike.

It has been an interesting 12 months for him considering how young he is, when you take that into account. Last year everyone was talking about him for different reasons. He gets a terrible injury, he comes back very early and when he did come back there were issues getting him tip top.

This was a nice step forward for him. Next time it will be, ‘Can you do more?’. When you are a player of speed and sharpness, when you have an injury like that it can be slightly held back. There is a lot of strength work he needs to do – stuff on the pitch and in the gym now we’re getting him towards the point where he has that acceleration. As a player he is 19 and he has had that injury so there is a lot more to come from him

[The future of Olivier Giroud , an unused substitute against Forest with Michy Batshuayi deputising for the rested Tammy Abraham, also remains up in the air] There’s no update on Oli and my answer remains the same as it has done recently. I have spoken with him. If the conditions are that it is something Oli really wants to do and it works for the club and for me and the squad, then it’s something that could happen. But it’s only when all three bases are covered. So, we’re still there

2020 01 06 Retrieve

[Hudson-Odoi was caught on his Achilles during the game against Nottingham Forest] It’s been an interesting 12 months for him considering how young he is, when you take that into account. Last year everyone was talking about him for different reasons. He gets a terrible injury, he comes back very early and when he did come back there were issues getting him tip-top

2020 01 06b Retrieve

[Lampard admits Giroud leaving Chelsea is ‘something that could happen’ in January] There’s no update on Ollie, but I’ve spoken with him. If the conditions are that it’s something he really wants to do and it works for the club, for me and the squad then it’s something that could happen. But only when all of those bases are covered. So we’ll see if we’re there

2020 01 10 Retrieve

[Lampard insists Pedro is not for sale] He is part of my plans, I started the season and he was in my team, and then, unfortunately, he got injured at Norwich before the game, and I had to make a change. Then he was out for a while, and I do have competition in that area

He has had bits here and there, I know he wants more games, I get that. But he certainly has something that he can contribute here with his experience and his ability to break lines and run behind people and maybe get those goals in and around the box.

He is here, I know his contract is up at the end of the season but I am not even looking that far ahead. He is here, he is part of the squad and I need everybody because football can change very quickly. There can be a period of games where you are on the bench, out of the squad, something changes an that is the moment that you have to come in and produce. I have got no winners in this game, I want the club to be the winner. People come in and do well, they stay in the team

[Lampard believes that Kepa Arrizabalaga doesn’t need to measure himself by clean sheets] I will always take into consideration the confidence levels of all the players. Goalkeeper a specific position and they are normally very obsessed with clean sheets, sometimes I think overly so because I think they take too much on their shoulders because clean sheets are an absolute collective.

So I will always hope that he feels confident. It is a balance between confidence and players being on edge knowing that we want them to produce, so he has made good saves recently, vs Brighton. I’m always happy with that because that is what he is there for, that’s his job, making saves to win us points. I’m happy with that so long may that continue. Shay Given – no, loved working with him but I am very happy with that I have got now

2020 01 10b Retrieve

[Lampard happy to see Tammy Abraham break Chelsea’s No.9 curse] I am really impressed because when the No.9 shirt was available quite a few people around here were saying to me: ‘Ooh, be careful, that’s not always had the best feeling in different players here. It was my decision to give it to him purely on his personality in pre-season. I knew he was a good player and I liked him on the training ground but his personality is one that he was saying: ‘Yes please, I want that, I want to be Chelsea’s No.9.’

It was an easy thing to feel and say at that point but to then go produce like he has done is a great start. And it’s a start. He needs to keep going because he is probably at that stage now where everyone is starting to expect Tammy to play well, score and affect games in a big way. And that brings a new challenge and that is his one now. When it [the No. 9 shirt] was mentioned, it made me think twice and go, ‘Oh, actually, what is the situation here?’ because he is a young boy.

If you’re signing a 25-year-old who has scored multiple goals in a different league or in the Premier League you might see it differently and it would be a really easy decision, but the question with a young boy is does he need that pressure? My opinion was yes.

I saw him coming through the ranks here for such a long time from being a young boy and for me, it was like he must have always wanted to be Chelsea’s No.9. That was his aim at all times. I know he used to idolise Didier Drogba. So he thought, ‘I want to be Chelsea’s mainline striker’ and the No.9 is generally that so I thought it was an opportunity for him to rise to that hopefully

[Lampard says he is ready to let Olivier Giroud go and he thinks having Abraham and Michy Batshuayi is enough for a team that normally plays with just one striker] We have some adaptable players in our team who could take up different roles so that would have to come into my thinking [if a striker got injured]. Again, that’s my job. I’m going into it now. I have to make those decisions as I go along. I also have to think about the makeup of the squad, the spirit of the squad and I also have a human level where I look at people and players, how they are, how they train and how the squad could be affected in lots of different ways. [about Giroud’s attitude], he is an absolute professional

Oli has been great as well and I respect him for that and that slightly comes into my thinking as well. The club will always come first. If I feel the decision to keep everybody in the January window that will be my decision too. Nothing is done yet so we can probably broach these questions if and when something is done. I am not worried [about Giroud’s attitude], he is an absolute professional

[Gareth Southgate has consistently called up the Blues striker this season after his run of good form and Lampard says Abraham knows he is competing with the Spurs man for England caps] He should always be thinking that. He’s not silly. You know who your competitors are whether it is to get into our team or the England team. So those things you see the environment about yourself. What I love about Tammy is that it just won’t be Harry Kane, he would do well but he should be taking markers from Harry Kane’s game himself. Tammy will be watching every type of striker and trying to improve himself at all times. And that’s the only important thing because the rest will fall into place

2020 01 10c Retrieve

[Chelsea exit for Andreas Christensen ruled out amid talk of AC Milan move] I can rule it out. I like Andreas as a player. I’ve always liked him. I used to train with him and saw the talent coming through. What I want from Andreas to be is the best he can be. When you see him and you see the height, the athleticism and the quality on the ball, particularly in choice of pass, then I think he can be all the things I want him to be and I want to work towards that. He knows that

[Pressed on what he feels Christensen needs to improve] The reality is we have competition at centre-back. They’re not easy conversations for me because I have to choose on what I see and generally most weeks, two of them won’t be that happy. One particularly not happy. But as with all the players I want to work on parts of the game I think they can improve and with Andreas you can watch him against Aston Villa and he was immense.

He was great to watch, he had everything in a centre-back, and then sometimes if we are coming up against teams that are physical and ask a question then Andreas really has to stand up. I don’t mind saying it because I think he knows he needs to know that. But what I will say those little bits in his game can really make him the fantastic centre-half I think he can be. And he is certainly a player that gets slightly misjudged on age. I think he’s been around a long time and went on loan at a young age and did particularly well and people think that he’s probably older than he is. He’s still relatively young so that’s absolutely on his side

2020 01 10d Retrieve

[Lampard confirms Chelsea will be without Pulisic for a ‘few weeks’ due to adductor injury] Pulisic is out, he will be out for a few weeks. Adductor injury. It’s disappointing for us and we will have to see how quickly he recovers because it is quite a nasty injury. It is a damaging miss. Before Christmas, he did report a bit of tiredness so he came out of the team and I was worried about injury. He is a very talented player, where he can make things happen

[Lampard also delivered an update on Ruben Loftus Cheek who has yet to feature for Chelsea this season] He [Loftus Cheek] is out, still for a while. We are hoping we can get him doing collective training at some point, maybe with the academy

[Lampard is wary of the threat posed by the Clarets] Burnley have a good record at the Bridge, very organised style and they can hurt you. It’s almost like, not the worst game you can play, but a team who can hurt you

2020 01 10e Retrieve

[Moussa Dembele not a target for Chelsea boss Lampard despite Giroud edging towards exit] Moussa Dembele is a player I know and the club know. I am surprised to see his name pop up so regularly when it is not popping up so regularly in my conversations to be brutally honest.

There are quite a few players in the last week that I can say the same about. I respect and I know he is another team’s player. Of course, and I have spoken about, the need to strengthen in high areas with goalscorers. We have been found pretty short in the home games recently. The idea of people being clinical - they are hard to find. I will only go that way if I know we are improving the squad that we have already.

At the minute, we are still working very hard on the training ground and in games to get that right ourselves. I don’t want to go cut and dry on anybody [regarding Dembele], as I said to you, it is not one I am openly talking about. If it is a decision then I will be a big part of that decision

[He said of Giroud] I said it after our last game, with Oli the situation is if it is right for everybody, first and foremost that’s us the club, because he is under contract then we will look at whether he will leave the club. I think he has been a great professional here. He has trained brilliantly through this season even without many opportunities. So I hold him in a high regard in that respect but I still have to make a decision for the football club and nothing is done yet. I think everyone is talking about it [Giroud potentially leaving] so I am not going to beat around the bush. I think his agent has spoken to the club [Inter] but until we decide it is the right thing then it is not done

[Lampard added on whether any transfers are imminent] No, not at the moment but when I say that, what is close? It is January. I have said if it is right then we will look at it. We are not imminent, you are not going to have any big news today or tomorrow

2020 01 10f Retrieve

[Chelsea forward Olivier Giroud is eager to reunite with Antonio Conte at Inter Milan after receiving a contract offer from the Nerazzurri] There’s no update on Ollie, but I’ve spoken with him. If the conditions are that it’s something he really wants to do and it works for the club, for me and the squad then it’s something that could happen. But only when all of those bases are covered. So we’ll see if we’re there

2020 01 11 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Reece James’ attacking prowess from full-back is proving a huge asset for Chelsea] He’s got a great, great delivery of cross and more than that. He’s good on the ball, he’s physically so good and he’s so young. This is just the start for him. The way I want us to play, the full-backs are going to be huge for us. If I want to get it right and get it to where I want it they have to be able to join in, they have to be an attacking threat.

He certainly is for us. He’s a big weapon at the minute that we have to use well. We have to anticipate those crosses now because they come in with a lot of juice on them. We have to be ready to anticipate and get across people and make goals like we did with the Tammy one

[Abraham moved on to 15 goals for the campaign] I hope he’s upset tonight because he should have had two or three. That’s how a striker will be. I know Tammy Abraham’s like that. At the same time, he got his goal. He keeps getting in there, his energy, his personality on the pitch. He’s that all-round striker. Obviously the next stage is can you be a bit more clinical but I’m delighted with Tammy

2020 01 11b Retrieve

[Lampard looking for Callum Hudson-Odoi to become ‘serious player’ after statement showing for Chelsea] For Callum to score in the six-yard box is far more exciting for me than for him to score from 35 yards, without a doubt. Because it means that he’s prepared to run the extra bit to sprint in there. And that wasn’t the only time he did it; he did it on one of the early chances we had in the first half. He was doing it, recovering, going higher up the pitch at the right times. And his overall performance was an absolute statement for Callum of what he needs to do. That was the real Hudson-Odoi and what he can be because there’s obviously more to come. But I thought his goal was brilliant for him, and if he can carry on doing that, then it’s a serious player we have in Callum

I hope he’s upset tonight because he should have had two or three. I know he’s like that but at the same time, he got his goal. He keeps getting in there, with his energy and personality on the pitch. He was that all-round striker. And the next stage is can you be that more clinical, but I’m delighted with Tammy

[Lampard set his side up to be attacking against the Clarets, with only Jorginho holding in midfield] It didn’t feel like a risk but it felt like a decision that was right for the game. Because I expected us to have a lot of ball, I’m aware we haven’t scored enough goals at home recently. And I felt that I want to get players on the pitch that can get goals, are driven to score goals. Ross Barkley can score, assist and is a great technician on the ball. So that was my thinking behind it. And the other thing against Burnley [is] you have to fight. So I thought if we match them in the fight, hopefully our attacking players could get us the goals that they did

It’s one performance at home, and the message has to be continuous. But it’s a nice example of a standard that we’ve set, and we have to match that. I’m not getting carried away, it just feels good; it was nice to smile in a game and enjoy what you’re watching, really positive football, great movement off the ball, getting combination down the side, crossing balls a lot and looking like we’re going to score goals. That’s what excites the fans. I felt for the fans in some of the recent home games. I understand it’s not that exciting when the level of the speed comes down. We just changed all that

2020 01 11c Retrieve

[Kante hamstring injury confirmed by Chelsea] Kante reported some feeling in his hamstring yesterday after training. We gave him overnight to see how it was but it wasn’t good enough this morning so not good enough to play. Everybody knows how important N’Golo is for us but these things always give an opportunity and it opens the door for Ross Barkley to come in and play

[Lampard said of Giroud] There’s no update on Ollie, but I’ve spoken with him. If the conditions are that it’s something he really wants to do and it works for the club, for me and the squad then it’s something that could happen. But only when all of those bases are covered. So we’ll see if we’re there

2020 01 11d Retrieve

[Chelsea progress Tariq Lamptey’s contract talks as PSG, Wolves & Nice monitor defender’s situation] We’ll see, he’s talking with the club and hopefully he feels a bit of love that we’ve parachuted him in. I’d seen him when I was doing my coaching badges and you do a lot of hours with the academy and youth team. I saw him train a lot and I know he has a different dimension as a right-sided wing-back. He has pace, a low centre of gravity and can go by people. Of course he wants to work on his end product and all the last bits

2020 01 12 Retrieve

[Lampard: Ross Barkley is of equal value to Kante and Chelsea midfield rivals] I speak a lot with Ross, I really like him and his character. He came to me a couple of weeks ago and he said to me that he’s just starting to feel good. It was a niggling injury and he’s just starting to feel released from it.

Today was the performance we want out of Ross, it was so positive. You saw his quality on the ball. He can hit the right-foot ball, left-foot ball, take the ball well. He looked confident today. That’s part of Ross’ game that you could question from the outside: how confident is he when things go against him?

We know exactly what Ross can do. He is an England player, he is playing for Chelsea and deservedly so. He has given me a lot of thinking to do with that performance today. I do have my issues in terms of my selection here but I have no winners in terms of who I like more or less. ‘He is a better bloke than that one’ – no. It’s what works for us. It’s what’s good out on the pitch.

Ross was a selection where people might have thought: ‘Oh, Ross and Mason Mount in midfield?’ - they both showed why they should be there today. It’s not easy for the midfielders. I’ve had to have little difficult conversations with pretty much all of them at some point this season. That’s a good thing in terms of selection for me and trying to find the right balance. Different games require different things. If everyone is firing and pushing each other then it is not a problem. Ross coming in today and performing like that is a really good problem

[Another player who caught the eye against Burnley was Reece James, with the 19-year-old full-back notching a fine assist with a trademark cross for Tammy Abraham’s headed goal] He’s a smart footballer. He takes up good positions high up the pitch at times and really wide. It was nice to see the combination between him and Callum today. It was a really dangerous one for Burnley today and we made good use of it.

Hopefully, it’s just the start of it in terms of first-team football. It’s the start of the partnership and it needs to be worked on. They both have different talents. When Callum is higher and running at people and being aggressive like he was today, and Reece is behind him, of course it is a big thing. It is not just that combination. We have a different options, Reece has brought that to the table to be fair. It will be a work in progress and hopefully it will improve

[Lampard on Reece James and England’s full-back situation] We have a lot of quality in that area. I don’t think he needs to concern himself with that. He really needs to establish himself with what he is doing now. The last few games he has done that, but that has to happen over a [consistent] period of time. I believe in Reece and his quality. If he works really hard he will get where he wants to be

2020 01 15 Retrieve

[Lampard has publicly admitted that Chelsea don’t need a replacement lined up to be able to sell Giroud, with Tammy Abraham continuing his good form and Michy Batshuayi operating as a back-up option] Not necessarily. Well listen, I think everyone is talking about it so I am not going to beat around the bush. I think his agent has spoken to the club [Inter] but until we decide it is the right thing, then it is not done

2020 01 17 Retrieve

[Lampard admits that he would consider doing a short-term deal during this transfer window and is also prepared to see no business done] I think I should be because that’s where we’re at at the moment. If it feels right for us, then we’ll do it. The players you mentioned there were top players. I think the idea of January being a time to buy players, it’s difficult for everybody – for players coming in, especially if they’re coming from a different league, for the club and for the settlement of the group.

I think that’s why we have to think ultra carefully and I do care and consider the club and where we’re going. I don’t want to make some knee-jerk reaction to say ‘here’s my first big signing’ because we couldn’t sign anyone in the summer. No, I want to do the right thing for the club. That’s why if I do it I’ll try and consider all things. It will always be in communication with the club. Hopefully, it’s the best thing for us. Whether that’s more of a short-term option or a long-term option, we’ll also have to consider

Yes, Kante’s had a few issues through the week. When I say yes, I think it’s a decision I have to make with absolute certainty but at the minute it looks like he’s good to go

[Lampard says he wants his players to enjoy life and has moved on from Ross Barkley’s misdemeanours] The good thing about being a boss is you don’t have to talk about all your things back in the day! Mind you, you can probably Google it. What I will say is there are two sides to it and I read Ross’s statements.

The first side is you should always look at yourself and I always said that about myself when I got it wrong. So look at yourself and don’t mention about anything else because society and members of the public you can’t control. The second side, I agree with, there are too many smartphones but that’s the second part of the argument because we are all so aware that there are a lot of smartphones so we are aware we have to change your way of living.

How much you trust the people you are around, your friends, all these things, unfortunately, or whatever, that’s the way the world has gone. I think you still come back to yourself and make sure you firstly act professionally and secondly be aware of those things because you can’t control the fact that the world has changed. I think we went to Lille when I got asked about that, my biggest concern was not really the bag of chips it was more the fact that we were training the next day. That is exactly where I see it and Ross knows that and I am not one to tell my lads don’t have a bag of chips, don’t have a few beers after you win a game.

Just make sure that when you think about the big scheme, you do it with the idea you have to train and perform at a level and as the game has moved forward and the speed and intensity of it even more so from my day, from eras gone by, the players have to be absolutely tip-top or this game will find you out. That’s not just a thing to Ross that is to all the players about how they live their life

2020 01 17b Retrieve

[Chelsea adopt anti-Semitism definition of IHRA] I think it’s an important statement, we hope it makes an impact, that’s the whole point. In simple terms as manager of the football club, I am proud that the club takes such a strong stance against any form of discrimination and we’ll be active in that going forward, which I think today shows. Words are one thing but actions are another, and we’ll always be very strong on that and will continue to be so

2020 01 17c Retrieve

[Barkley exit ruled out by Chelsea boss Lampard as Loftus-Cheek steps up recovery] There’s no talk here of Ross Barkley going anywhere. He’s our player. I’ve got a lot of faith in Ross. That’s news I heard like everyone else this week

[Loftus-Cheek stepping up his recovery from an Achilles rupture that has ruled him out since May] He’s training now with the Under-16s, Under-18s and then the Under-23s in a short space of time, which is good for us. The sooner he can be back with us the better. We’re working in every way. There’s a different look on his face, more smiley and happy. It’s been tough. He’s not one that’s walked around head down creating a negative atmosphere, but it’s a lonely place. He’s integrating more towards us now. It can be forgotten we’ve missed a hugely influential player. If he can be training with us after the break he might not be far away

2020 01 17d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has previously urged his club to sign a forward because December was a month of inconsistency] I will look at all areas of the team but I think it was quite clear in the summer that if you lose Eden Hazard, who was a huge part of scoring or creating our goals last season and the season before that, you are going to have some issues up front. I think we’ve found ways as a team to still be competitive. We’ve shown that in the league and the Champions League. But if we’re going to get even better, to be more clinical in forward areas, then I think we’ll look at [bringing in players] because we’re just not converting enough chances.

I’m not here to criticise anybody because we’ve just qualified from a really tough group to get through to the next stage of the Champions League. But we have standards here and I know how much the players also want to be successful. It’s very clear [we need more quality in attack], so we’ll keep working towards it

[The Blues boss played down interest in Moussa Dembele before last week’s game against Burnley] He is a player I know and the club know. But I am surprised to see his name pop up so regularly when it is not popping up so regularly in my conversations [with the club], to be brutally honest

People who are clinical are hard to find. I will only [buy a player] if I know we are improving the squad that we have already. At the minute, we are still working very hard on the training ground and in games to get things right ourselves

2020 01 18 Retrieve

[Defend deep, win your aerial duels and hit Chelsea on the break. It is the simple, effective formula that has led to the Blues losing as many games under Frank Lampard after 23 matches this season] We can’t always rely on Tammy Abraham, we have to have goals across our front line. If we want to bridge the gap upwards, we can’t just rely on Tammy. He has been fantastic this season. It didn’t quite come off for him this evening, but that is football. I can’t complain about anything from the team, really. Of course, we don’t want to give headers away in our box. They are big, it happens, but apart from that they gave everything to try to win the game

2020 01 18b Retrieve

[Lampard bemoans Chelsea’s lack of ‘killer instinct’ in Newcastle defeat] It’s football, you have to get your head around it very quickly. I’m not always massive on stats but the feel of the game was domination. They hit the bar with a header, one of I think three headers they had in the game and they scored with one of them. Other than that, second half I don’t remember them endangering our box, we were camped around their box and creating chances.

We know we have problems at the top of the pitch, scoring goals. We don’t get enough front-line goals if we want to bridge the gap and that’s something we’ve seen a lot this season, especially at home. Today was like a home game in how we performed on the pitch and if you don’t score then you’re always liable to a sucker punch and we got it. It’s something we need to address, the instinctive nature to score the goal. We’re working on it.

We need to be clinical. We can’t make any bones about it, it’s a reality. We can’t work anymore in training on finishing. You have to have that killer instinct in front of goal. We need to score more goals from front-line areas to get where we need to be

[it is clear Chelsea need reinforcements in the final third] It doesn’t matter until it’s done. It doesn’t matter until it’s done

2020 01 19 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has once again hinted at needing new signings in his forward line] In attacking areas [is where we would look to strengthen], because we need to be more clinical. I wouldn’t say [we need] a goalscorer but we need to be more clinical in the box in terms of our front line. When we attack and spend a lot of time around the opposition’s box, we have chipped in with some goals from midfield and have people who can arrive from midfield, but the broader reality is that we need more goals from the front line

[Lampard insists not to blame young Tammy Abraham who fail to score in the 1-0 defeat away at Newcastle United] It doesn’t matter what his age, Harry Kane has afternoons, [Kylian] Mbappe, so does [Lionel] Messi. I think the one thing I would expect always is desire and trying in everything that he does and I think he always does that, to be fair. It was just a difficult afternoon. And again Newcastle absolutely get numbers in their box to defend, so to expect him to get loads of space is not right. To hope that he gives everything to try to get space, which is what he did it just didn’t quite come off, I’d say

[Lampard doesn’t believe age is to blame for inconsistency] They will be hurt and disappointed. In terms of learning, we have all felt these games before, whether it’s academy football, first-team football, Championship football, it happens. I don’t think there is a naive nature or a young nature to it. I just think it’s football and the practical nature. We don’t finish chances and you leave a team in the game and you can lose the game. They are disappointed, not just the young players but everyone. I think they gave everything and I don’t think I can complain about that too much at all. They pushed and pushed but sometimes football just does that to you

2020 01 20 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has dismissed a suggestion from Manchester United legend Roy Keane that he avoids criticism in his job because he is English] [That comment] was the moment my ears pricked up because I don’t think being English gives you any sort of a bye from criticism. In fact, I heard quite a lot when I first got this job of [people] writing me off because I’m young and English and only had a year at Derby.

Fair play to Roy, I love watching him talk about football because of how passionate and to the point he is, but I don’t think I’ve had any byes for being English and sometimes it feels slightly different. I don’t need to name names. But certain people were saying you shouldn’t give him the job. Give it to people who have got experience of doing well in Italy or somewhere else or whatever. I don’t even know where to go with it. We were just all aware there would be those sorts of feeling.

I don’t feel isolated [as an English manager in the Premier League]. A manager that comes from another country will get praise or criticism. A manager that is English and home-grown will get praise or criticism at different points of their career. That is why I try not to get drawn on it. What I wouldn’t say is that I only get praise because I am English – I think every manager gets the same

2020 01 20b Retrieve

[Lampard says after the Watford win, with Kante missing five of Chelsea’s six games during their best winning run of the season] It’s great to watch, I enjoyed watching their play. The link between Jorginho and Kovacic and Mason [Mount], their comfort on the ball, their pass appreciation, their ability to find a forward pass or break the forward line, Kovacic in particular driving through the midfield at times, I thought they were outstanding

2020 01 20c Retrieve

[Victor Moses close to Inter loan move with €10m option to buy after returning to Chelsea] With Oli [Giroud] there isn’t much more to say. On Victor Moses, he is coming back with a view to going somewhere else. Talks are ongoing

2020 01 20d Retrieve

[Arsenal have shown signs of improvement since Mikel Arteta was drafted in to succeed Unai Emery in the managerial hot seat] It will be a very tough match. This league is so competitive. I know that they are a good team with good players. There has been a change when Arteta came on, we must be on guard and at our best

2020 01 21 Retrieve

[Lampard disappointed with Chelsea draw 2-2 with 10-man Arsenal at Stamford Bridge] I am disappointed given the situation of the game. We completely deserved to go 1-0 up. For a little bit after that we were getting used to them with 10 men. But we created enough chances in the second half, it was just the same old story – we couldn’t take them

We could have had three or four goals today. Having shots, crosses and lots of ‘ooh’ moments. We have to be clinical. When gameday comes you have to have the killer instinct. We’ve not got that at the moment. We might be a bit young and a bit of transition about us but we have to have that quality. It’s nothing on the crowd, that’s about us

We didn’t defend and gifted them two goals. That’s people not doing their jobs which they should know. Moments like that lose you points at this level

2020 01 21b Retrieve

[Chelsea hold Cavani talks with PSG but no bid for wantaway striker] I think each case is different and whether it’s worked or not in certain cases, I wouldn’t let that cloud my thinking. I would do it here in a moment if I felt there was experience needed and the role and the player comes up, and they’re gettable. I wouldn’t say, ‘Oh, that hasn’t worked a few times with different players’. I think everyone is different. If it felt right, then it’s something we would look at doing

2020 01 22 Retrieve

[Abraham injury leaves Chelsea short at centre forward but don’t expect new signings] I know where we need strengthening, but it is a difficult window for us. It is probably more of a short-term window. What this season has given us and continues to give us is answers on the pitch, and in areas where I think we can get better. That’s for me to get right, but not so much in this window

Tammy Abraham had a bang on his ankle; he has had ice on it. I haven’t spoken to him yet, so I can’t really update you on that

2020 01 22b Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has spoken highly of the former Palermo hitman] I played against Cavani and I always liked his mentality, his attitude and of course his goal stats speak for themselves

2020 01 22c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard encouraged Kepa Arrizabalaga to stand up under scrutiny following Chelsea’s wasteful 2-2 Premier League draw against Arsenal on Tuesday] I know there’s a focus on him at the minute. That’s top-line football. Yeah, with his feet, a couple of times he took too long and nearly gave it away. Sometimes that can change the momentum of a game. That’s something he will know, has to look at and we will look at. It’s normal. Any player, particularly goalkeepers, people will look at you. That’s when you stand up and show the mettle you’ve got. He is not the only one. We are in fourth position, which is seen as pretty good. I know and we know there should be another 10 points on the board at least on performance. All of us need to look at those finer details

[Chelsea have concerns where Tammy Abraham in visible discomfort during the latter stages of the game] I don’t know. He has got a bang on his ankle. He had ice on it. I haven’t spoken to him yet, so I can’t really update you on that

2020 01 24 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has denied transfer’s stories] The stories are not true. I’m not in conversation with Cavani so I can’t tell you that. Until anyone’s here or not here and signed somewhere else that’s the only time for me to comment on those situations about whether they’re persuadable or not

[Lampard also said Michy Batshuayi will get his chance to stake his claim for regular football with Giroud in talks to leave Chelsea] He starts tomorrow. Yes, this is a chance for him. Part of that has been … we have seen his breakthrough and the consistency of [Abraham’s] game, but yes, this is a chance for him and clearly, he certainly has got to take that chance in terms of his all-round game and goals and his overall performance. There have been times this season where he has come on and he has made a difference, and that needs to be consistent

2020 01 24b Retrieve

[Unconvincing Kepa Arrizabalaga faces fight to save his Chelsea career] I know there’s a focus on him at the minute. That’s top-line football. Yes, with his feet, a couple of times today he took too long and he nearly gave it away. That can sometimes change the momentum of a game. He knows that himself and he has to look at that. And we have to look at that too […] I am not looking at strengthening that position now but Kepa knows that there have been some mistakes and is honest about that

I don’t like too many stats on expected goals because it is not all that clear at times, but we are bottom of the league in terms of our numbers at home and we’re probably second only to Liverpool

2020 01 24c Retrieve

[Lampard looking for another striker at Chelsea but offers positive update on Tammy Abraham’s injury] The good news is he hasn’t fractured anything. That is the good news, but we still don’t know the full extent, it’s not clear at the moment

I think the impetus to bring in a striker or a player to get on the end of chances is there. The recent games have shown that. When you are creating 20 chances a game it is clear. With Olivier [Giroud] it is the same situation. There has been contact from other clubs. He’s still our player. There is choice. It’s not the ideal window, history has proven that. It is about getting the choice right. The club know my thoughts on it

[Chelsea considers Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare as striking reinforcements] I am aware of him, but not on my radar for this window

[Lampard on Kepa Arrizabalaga] Kepa Arrizabalaga will have to deal with that. That’s what being a footballer is about. There is spotlight on them. The important thing for that is not to get embroiled in what people are saying, not just Kepa but any player. I am not looking at strengthening that position now. Kepa knows and is honest that there have been some mistakes

2020 01 25 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Chelsea need to sign new players in the January transfer window] There is no movement to speak of now. We got a punishment in the summer and it is meant to hurt you. We lost certainly one of the biggest players in our history and one of the most effective and dominant players in terms of what he did. That is the situation.

My job is to work every day on the training ground to make the players better and the other part for the club is how we move forward by bringing in players. We lost ground last summer, so we need to, for the short-term, push for this top four finish because I have a strong feeling where we can improve personnel-wise to take us forward. For me it’s clear. The money of it is not my job but I have to be honest and truthful. Short term recruitment is something we have to get right

I’m pleased. You can never take these games for granted. There was a full house here. I know that is not always the norm so the atmosphere was bigger. In the first half Hull weren’t great, and that’s no disrespect because in the second half they were really good and put us under pressure.

The first half was our time, when they were not quite at it, to finish the game. We had one-on-ones through the middle with their keeper. We got a little bit sloppy when we thought we were playing well and we didn’t really capitalise on chances, which imparts a bit of pressure. The cup tie carried on into the 94th minute because of us and because Hull gave it everything to try and get back in the game. The game was in the balance [when we scored our second]. You could sense it. So yes, the second goal was big for us because it gave us a cushion

2020 01 25b Retrieve

[Chelsea will be without their 15-goal top-scorer for Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round trip to Hull City, meaning just a fourth start of the season in all competitions for Batshuayi] He starts [on Saturday], yes, this is a chance for him. Part of that has been how Tammy Abraham’s been - we have seen his breakthrough and the consistency of his game. But yes, this is a chance for him and clearly he certainly has got to take that chance in terms of his all-round game and goals and his overall performance

[Asked what he hopes to see from the Belgium striker against Hull] I don’t want to sit here and dissect Michy’s game, but I just want to see a performance and every time he gets to be on the pitch. There have been times this season where he has come on and he has made a difference, and that needs to be consistent. To be fair to Michy - his approach and work ethic, I cannot complain about it at all in training. I’m sure he will say he hasn’t had that many opportunities that would be normal for a player that’s played as much as him this season. But the reality of it is, when you get those opportunities, whether it’s ten minutes coming on to try and affect a game, or starts in whatever game they are, you need to try and absolutely make an impact. At times he’s made an impact. At other times not so much. The brutal reality is, I suppose Tammy’s had a really good season and his [Batshuayi’s] moments have probably not been as much as he would want. But he does have to try and make the impact in every little moment and chance he gets

2020 01 25c Retrieve

[Lampard feels ‘like a broken record’ after narrow Chelsea win in FA Cup] The good news is we are in the hat, the bad news is that it is a small example of our season. We had the game in our grasp and we play in nice patterns to finish them. But when they don’t come off you need to keep trying them. When we play well we are a good team but we don’t finish the game. We caused our own problems. It is a hard one. We work hard in front of goal and it is not coming off for us. It is going to define you. I feel like a broken record. We have the larger share of possession and shots on goal but not making those count. There is more goals to be had and control of the game. You can’t bemoan your luck, such as a deflection with the Hull goal. It is frustrating. We are making mistakes and allowing them to run two on two in the last few minutes

[Lampard stressed he hopes to see more from Batshuayi when he is given a chance to play the full 90 minutes] He gets his goal. I am pleased as a goal scorer and a striker, he wants to score goals and it helps his confidence. I am pleased. I have said all season that we can’t just rely on Tammy. Tammy has been scoring regularly. He has given us a lot. Of course, we want Michy firing and scoring goals like he did today and when he trains he needs to stay at that level because today we needed him.

I said yesterday, he trains as I want him to train and that’s not easy when you are not playing as much as you want to do but you have to go the extra mile to show that you deserve to play. When you get them opportunities then you have to, wherever they are, show it.

Today, I am happy with Michy. I am happy. Not because of just his goal. His goal was slightly fortunate but I like that. That’s how goal scorers should score those kind of goals but I just want him to keep delivering when he is training and when the opportunities come. We are at that level of football which is quite demanding and everyone judges strikers on goals and I think Michy has that in him. So I want to see a bit more

2020 01 26 Retrieve

[Loftus-Cheek needs time but Chelsea miss his goals] I think you will miss Ruben; I don’t care who you are. You’ll miss his abilities. His natural physique, his ability to move the ball well and score the goals like he did last season, that has to be a big part of his game as well

Of course, we’ve missed a player of that level and it is nice and put a smile on everyone’s face on Friday because he is popular with his team-mates too. A smile on everyone’s face to see him back

It was the first day with us fully on Friday and it was a light session so that suited him. He has a fair way to go still, and I’m not pessimistic there. He just needs a full week training with us first, a tough week

Then he will need some U23 games, and again I think the break comes at a nice time for him to work and we’ll gauge it the other side of that break and see where he is. It might be too early [to face Leicester in the U23’s on Friday].

The week’s training is the important thing because he hasn’t had that at first-team level. Then we will consider the games after that

[Lampard has become accustomed to playing without Loftus-Cheek but in recent weeks he has also been without Christian Pulisic] He is hopefully going to be training in the middle of next week. Leicester will be very tight, but hopefully after the break, it might fall at quite a nice time to get him properly match fit

[Kovacic ran the game from midfield with a dominating performance and Lampard said he was part of the conversation to turn the Croatian’s Real Madrid loan move into a £40.3 million [€48m/$52m] move last summer] [Kovacic] was the one that we could bring in because of the situation. I watched him last year and I liked him from afar. It maybe wasn’t the easiest year for him and some times his started, some times he didn’t.

But I just saw a natural talent in the way that he can take people out of midfield and travel really quickly with the ball and play really nice combinations. I think it’s not the norm, always, you have a high level of that.

But there are other parts of his game that we want him to improve. We want him to score more goals and defensively when he is in deep defensive areas, of course, he has to be very aware to pick up runners and do that job as well. I liked him. I was part of that process and I want to work with him more.

2020 01 26b Retrieve

[Lampard knows Tomori better than anyone and he has seen a change in the defender’s personality] Yeah, he has come a long way since the first day he turned up at Derby. There were things he needed to improve, even personality-wise, he was quite quiet and you see a change in his personality and you see the player he has turned into. He has played for his country; he has got into the international squad, playing regularly for us and doing very well so I am delighted with his progress

2020 01 26c Retrieve

[Lampard denies Pedro could be sold despite interest from Major League Soccer] He is part of my plans. I started the season and he was in my team, and then, unfortunately, he got injured at Norwich before the game and I had to make a change. Then he was out for a while, and I do have competition in that area.

He has had bits here and there, I know he wants more games, I get that. But he certainly has something that he can contribute here with his experience and his ability to break lines and run behind people and maybe get those goals in and around the box.

He’s here, I know his contract is up at the end of the season but I am not even looking that far ahead. He’s here, he’s part of the squad and I need everybody because football can change very quickly. There can be a period of games where you’re on the bench, out of the squad, something changes and that’s the moment that you have to come in and produce. I have got no winners in this game, I want the club to be the winner. [If] people come in and do well, they stay in the team

2020 01 27 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard has talked about his desire to keep Pedro but MLS clubs will give him a chance to leave west London] He is part of my plans, I started the season and he was in my team, and then, unfortunately, he got injured at Norwich before the game, and I had to make a change. Then he was out for a while, and I do have competition in that area

He has had bits here and there, I know he wants more games, I get that. But he certainly has something that he can contribute here with his experience and his ability to break lines and run behind people and maybe get those goals in and around the box.

He is here, I know his contract is up at the end of the season but I am not even looking that far ahead. He is here, he is part of the squad and I need everybody because football can change very quickly. There can be a period of games where you are on the bench, out of the squad, something changes and that is the moment that you have to come in and produce. I have got no winners in this game, I want the club to be the winner. People come in and do well; they stay in the team

2020 01 31 Retrieve

[Loftus-Cheek can be Chelsea’s late-season secret weapon] I think you will miss Ruben; I don’t care who you are, you’ll miss his abilities. His natural physique, his ability to move the ball well and score the goals like he did last season, that has to be a big part of his game as well.

Of course, we’ve missed a player of that level and it was nice to put a smile on everyone’s face on Friday because he is popular with his team-mates too. A smile on everyone’s face to see him back.

It was the first day with us fully on Friday and it was a light session so that suited him. He has a fair way to go still, and I’m not pessimistic there. He just needs a full week training with us first, a tough week.

Then he will need some Under-23 games, and again I think the break comes at a nice time for him to work. We’ll gauge it the other side of that break and see where he is. It might be too early [to face Leicester in the U23s on Friday]

The week’s training is the important thing because he hasn’t had that at first-team level. Then we will consider the games after that

2020 01 31b Retrieve

[Lampard says Chelsea now underdogs for top four after failing to strengthen in transfer window] Every time I look at the television another player signs for a club, that’s the transfer window. But if I’m looking at it with my business head on and looking around us in the table and I look at Manchester United obviously signing a big, big player, a world-class player, in my opinion. The teams around us, Sheffield United making fantastic signings, Chris Wilder’s job is incredible because he’s had years to work that group and now they’re adding where he sees fit.

Tottenham have signed a few and they’re not far behind us. And not only have they signed a few, but a couple of players have left were obviously – not being too crude about it – the situation was they were towards the end of their contracts and maybe weren’t happy being at the club any more.

Sometimes that’s as important as bringing players in. It’s changing the feeling of the group if players are not wanting to be there so that’s obviously smart business on that part. Now what remains to be seen will be seen and from my view – and this is not to talk down ourselves because we’re six points clear in fourth – now we become probably the underdogs and the outsiders to some point because the teams around us have strengthened. It’s a fact

I don’t think there’s any specific point where a deal falls down. It could be early or towards the end but if we haven’t got anything done, that is all that really matters. I’m not surprised because this is football and nothing should surprise me.

I went through a January window last year [at Derby County] - different circumstances and it was difficult to bring in players. Everyone has their own difficulties in different ways. Let’s not forget it’s a difficult window. I get that. And probably for sure the fact we missed the last window made it a bit more crucial for us. Now we have missed two windows. I talk about the trust of the fans there and I still feel it.

When we lost at home to Liverpool I have never seen a reaction to a home defeat like that. Because the fans are saying, ‘We get it, the players are young and there is a transitional feel about that’. We need that trust more than ever. For the next four months because as we have seen in recent games, there have been times when little elements aren’t coming off for us. Finishing being the main one. And with young players, as much as I want to sit here and drive and drive them, we have to accept that sometimes there are players who are young, were playing football in the Championship last year, or youth football last year and coming into the first team is very tough for them.

I know our fans will give us that trust and we certainly need it to keep pushing for that this season. The reality is I have an idea here as well of where I want to get to and I don’t think any knee-jerk reaction from myself or from the club would have been positive either.

If you are not going to improve and it’s late like that, I don’t even want to listen to that. I want to work to a longer-term plan and have trust in that. Now if you look at the history of clubs, and this club, there are lots of players who moved in that last moment and it didn’t work out and maybe they are on loan, or maybe they are sat in the squad three years later and not playing. And that’s not what I want. I want everyone here to absolutely be able to put a shift in and be a positive for the squad. So yes, I wouldn’t want that knee-jerk reaction late signing, if it’s not better than what we have got, for sure

[Mason Mount, Callum Hudson-Odoi and even 15-goal striker Tammy Abraham have all had periods where they are primary targets of criticism this season. Lampard admits he has had to use them more than he would have liked due to not having the players he wants in all areas of the pitch] Possibly there will be that situation. I’ve asked a lot already. At times I haven’t been able to rest in certain areas of the pitch. If I do rest people question why because some of the young have been the top performers. But I don’t want to make it just about the young. Everybody has to react. Whatever your situation at the club or thinking that’s football.

Everyone is in a different situation individually. Everyone has to push and be on edge. It can’t be nicey nicey now for us until the end of the season. In every training session and in every game we play, we have to be absolutely on top of ourselves if we want that fourth place.

I have to be the first person who remains positive, no matter what, and I have to be truthful when I speak out loud. Chelsea fans are sitting listening and I respect them for that and they want the best. We know that recruitment is huge for a team that wants to be successful.

Look no further than Liverpool and Manchester City in recent years. But it’s a fact. People will get bored if I keep crying about that fact. I have to work. The players have to work. I think at the start of the season a lot of fans, a lot of pundits from the outside, nobody had us in their top four. Nobody.

I think people were saying ‘maybe if you’re in the top eight we understand, top 10 maybe we understand’. Obviously not fighting relegation but we understand. I think now probably because there was a period where we were ahead of the curve expectations were ‘ooh we’re hanging on in fourth that’s not good, that result’s not good’ because expectations change. I get that. Expectations change. But the reality is that now that we’re in fourth but it’s going to be a real big fight. And we have to be up for that challenge. Young, middle, more experienced players. But the first person that’s up for that is me

[Chelsea’s frustrations in the transfer window are further compounded by losing their recent debutant from the academy Tariq Lamptey] It’s Tariq Lamptey’s choice. Because of his contract situation, it’s his choice if he moves on because he’s out of contract in the summer. It’s something we can’t really control, I suppose

2020 01 31c Retrieve

[Asked if Giroud will be bidding farewell to the Blues] No. He has been incredible as a player and a man during this time. Will he leave? No. He trained today. No ins and no outs. It’s my job to get the best out of all my players

The window is 95% shut for us. The answer is probably no for the players you would ask about

[Pressed on whether there was any sense of frustration] I wouldn’t say frustrated. I wanted to bring players in, but I know how football has been

2020 02 01 Retrieve

[Lampard’s frustration was obvious on deadline day, with the manager arguing that Chelsea are now underdogs in the battle for fourth despite having a six-point cushion over United, Tottenham and Wolves] It’s clear that we wanted to bring players in. I certainly wanted to bring players in. I think I’ve made that pretty clear over the last few weeks and it hasn’t happened

2020 02 01b Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea still top-four underdogs after draw with Leicester side] We were underdogs at the start of the season. Not many people gave us the top-four slot and I understand why, and it’s probably the same now. We’ve come to Leicester, who everyone’s raving about, quite rightly, and we’ve got a point. We move on

We were the better team in the first half, in terms of how we moved the ball, and we created some gilt-edged chances. In the second half we weren’t so fluid and they created some good chances themselves. Toni Rudiger and Andreas Christensen were really good. Toni was aggressive, the second goal is a really great header, so I’m really pleased with him.

His performance was pretty good, he makes a good save, he’s comfortable with his feet and there was not much you could do with either goal

2020 02 02 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Chelsea have missed Christian Pulisic in recent weeks] It is hard to answer [on when he will be back]. We tried to get him out this week and step it up a little bit but we had to pull out of that. So the break might have come at a good time because it buys us a couple of weeks. I won’t have an answer till we’re back training. Yes, [we miss him] because he’s a quality player and was having a really good patch pre-Christmas. But others have to stand up too. But, of course, we’ll be happy to have him back

Yes, he was good. That’s not new, that’s been his recent form. He had a small injury and missed the game against Arsenal and Hull. But he’s a weapon for us. He can attack with his crossing but we need to get on the end of them more. And he’s also very solid defensively. When you think of his age, you can get excited about Reece. There is a lot more he can obviously do but I’m really pleased with how he’s developing at the minute

There are all the sides of his game he can work on, although I’m not going to improve his crossing, I don’t think, because he’s a natural. But we can talk about his position, his link-up with the winger in front of him and the midfield players, and his defensive attributes because they are first and foremost. And making sure he is always in the right areas. And he is very open to that, as he should be. Like all the young players at Chelsea are, they are sponges, they want to learn. They want to listen. So you enjoy coaching them because they want to get better

I will take a few days off. I’m not travelling anywhere far afield but it will be nice to spend some family time. This job is consuming and I’ve probably given my wife too much chat about football when we’ve been having dinner and stuff. Sometimes I get told that so I’ll try to refrain for a few days and then get back to work. I know it has been talked about a lot, particularly because of the Klopp situation, but there are lot of people in a football club who work intensely and the players do a lot of travelling and so on, so I think we’re all for it. We championed it when we didn’t have it because it didn’t help our European team and maybe our national team, and then we moan about it when we have got it and try to find a reason why we shouldn’t have it. I think it is a good thing

2020 02 14 Retrieve

[Lampard gives no guarantees Kepa Arrizabalaga will return vs Man Utd] I’ve decided. You’ll find out [on Monday]. The reaction has been good, as I’d expect. [He has been] training hard, head down. I haven’t had lots of conversations with him this week and it’ll be a decision for me to make. It doesn’t matter when you came to the club, I don’t take into account the fee. It’s the training that counts

I wouldn’t say that. I wasn’t looking for that necessarily. I think I spoke around the Leicester game and said that I have to pick the team as I see it on form in every position, so it was just a selection on that day. Now I know with goalkeepers there’s a bit more to it than that. We know it’s a slightly different role than everybody else. But I want everybody’s reaction all the time to be spot on and he came out the team, I know what that means, I know how that will feel for him.

Every player has it, maybe [Lionel] Messi is the only one who doesn’t, or [Cristiano] Ronaldo, but the rest of us do. And I had it in my career many a time, it’s part and parcel of being a footballer and you have to show character in those little moments. I’ve been pleased with the reaction

Tammy Abraham is still feeling the effects [of a recent injury], to be honest. We’ve had to take him out of training a couple of days this week. He trained today [Friday], so we’re hopeful, but he will be assessed over the weekend

2020 02 14b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard believes Kepa Arrizabalaga could come back stronger after the goalkeeper was dropped from the Chelsea starting XI] That is the reality of life, of football, of our careers. Everyone has these things and you can’t pull the wool over their eyes or be too sweet about it, because it is what it is. The only thing I ever found that got me back into the team or through a moment was hard work on the training ground. If you are going to sulk and if I ever did sulk, I would quickly try to readdress that myself and realise that I can only affect one thing, and that’s how I train to be ready to play

I was fortunate as a player here because I played a lot of games. Probably in my early 30s it slightly changed, and at the time I didn’t like it, I remember the feeling. But then you have to be a team-mate, and you have to be part of the club and you have to accept it, and sometimes you have to find another way, and understand that things are slightly different.

That was just my story, everybody is slightly different, but with the competition in squads now I do think you always have to be aware that if your standards drop or if the manager chooses for whatever reason, and that can happen, and handle it in the right way. I don’t expect smiley faces when people get dropped, I just expect reactions, I expect support of the team-mates there. It is not easy, I’m saying this as a manager, I know as a player I was not brilliant at this myself, but from where I am sitting now I try and push that, and I think sometimes it can be something that makes you stronger. Most people get it at some point in their career. So it is what it is

2020 02 14c Retrieve

[Lampard: Hakim Ziyech arrival doesn’t mean Pedro and Willian are leaving Chelsea] No it doesn’t. Conversations are ongoing with those players. They have both been successful players with the club

We tried and it was not possible. We all know how the January window works. You respect that clubs with top players want to keep them and that was the case. But that is done and we have him for next season. Pleased with that. I think he’s a fantastic player. He first came into my eye-line in their run in the Champions League last year. I thought he was one of their standout players, particularly in their games against Tottenham. We’ve come up against them twice this season so I know a lot about him. I know about his qualities. He’s got a great left foot and plays generally off the right-hand side but can play behind the front man. Probably when you look at us this season there have been games where we may have maybe struggled to unlock the door. He’s certainly a player we hope can bring that bit of creativity and something different for us. He scores goals, assists. I know he’s not coming now but I think it’s exciting for us as a club and the fans to know that he’ll be here next year

We have to worry first about where we are at and trying to come in the top four is the massive priority for us. My main concern is that. We are always on the lookout and working together to try and see how we can improve. I think those improvements are needed in the summer but we have to make sure we get the right ones

2020 02 15 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori would likely to have been sent out on loan by Chelsea had the Blues not been stung by a transfer ban] Would Mason have gone on loan again this year? Possibly. Probably. Tomori definitely would. It was my decision to keep Tomori because I’d worked with him at Derby and loved his attitude. I don’t have to play Tammy - he has to show me why, of our three strikers, he deserves it

The ban forced my hand slightly but I knew the fans wanted to see young players. I knew how much the academy put into these players. I’m not even talking about Mohamed Salah or Kevin De Bruyne - you mention them and you get an absolute headline. But there have been other academy players over the last 10 years who might have come through quicker. The sweat, the tears, the hours that go into those prospects. Neil Bath and Jim Fraser, who have run the academy for years, put so much into it. The day we beat Wolves 5-2, Tomori got the first, Tammy scores three, then Mason scores. You want to ring them up and go, ‘Can we have a few pints tonight, lads?

[on Hudson-Odoi] The one thing these players have over us from our era is that from the age of 10, they’ve been watching videos of themselves. They do studies: what are my weak points, my strong points? We had a whole video about wingers making the box going into Burnley last month. Then when Callum scores that tap-in, it’s probably my favourite goal of the season. Look at Raheem Sterling, Sadio Mane, Salah and ask why they are racking up numbers. If you want to play as a winger at a top club, you have to get goals

2020 02 16 Retrieve

[Lampard demands more from Chelsea youngsters in battle for top-four finish] It’s a critical time for us and I need the young players to do their thing. I think when you come through this academy, you should understand what playing for the first team at Chelsea looks like. You must always drive yourself and drive yourself and, if there’s times when you’re not necessarily at your best, you need to drive yourself again. The young players have made a great impact this season and we’ve had reliance on them to a degree, because we knew we couldn’t bring anyone in at the start

Through the season I think there are going to be some difficult times and, if you look at Tammy Abraham at the moment, and maybe Mason [Mount], I think the break was particularly good for them as they can come back and hopefully show more levels in their game. There’s been tough little times recently and I think it’s up to them now. They’ve shown they’re part of this first-team squad and they’ve all had their good inputs but I want more and I think I want more now

I always like to reflect on myself and how I work. When you’re a new manager at a club, and I only came in last summer, you always think: ‘What small tweaks can I make to how we prepare and how we train daily?’. There was a lot of self-reflection [during the break]. And just having some time away, having a bit of clarity, I think we should be happy that we’re in fourth position. I think that would have been a plus at the start of the season. At the same time how can we get that extra 10 or 15% which I think we’ve been lacking? We would have had a lot more points on the board [if we did] and made fourth look a lot more comfortable

2020 02 17 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard wants Chelsea to banish the memory of a 4-0 defeat at Old Trafford on the opening weekend] It was only a surprise probably having watched the performance, it wasn’t a 4-0 game. I would be the first to criticise ourselves and I was honest with the players afterwards. I said: ‘Look, that’s not a 4-0, let’s not walk away from the small details that made it 4-0, but don’t take this as a big kick in the teeth, because it shouldn’t be on performance’. Then a few days later they went toe-to-toe with the best team in the country this season by a mile, Liverpool, and possibly should have won the Super Cup. I didn’t find the defeat to Manchester United was a real seminal moment. It didn’t feel nice on the day, it would be great to correct it tonight, but at the same time, I didn’t take it as a huge hurtful thing. I could see in those two performances against Manchester United and Liverpool what the team could achieve this season

[Goalkeeper Kepa recently dropped for Willy Caballero after a string of mediocre performances] With the competition in squads now I do think you have to always be aware that if your standards drop or if the manager chooses to leave you out for whatever reason, then that can happen and you have to handle it in the right way. It happens to most people during their career. I don’t expect smiling faces when people get dropped, I just expect reactions, I expect support for their team-mates.

It’s not easy. I’m saying this as a manager, but I know as a player I wasn’t brilliant at that myself, but from where I’m sitting now I try to push that and I think that sometimes it can be something that just makes you stronger. The group should always support their team-mates anyway. We’re playing at a high level and there’s competition in the squad, you have to respect the player that might be coming into the team at all times.

I’m there to support the players, they know that I’m on their side, even though I can sometimes make decisions that they don’t like. You need a strong supportive group that stays together no matter what, throughout the season, through the 50 or 60 games we play when lots of things are going to happen.

It is the brutal reality of life, of football, of our careers, that everyone has these things. You can’t pull the wool over their eyes and be too sweet about it, because the only thing I ever found that got me back in the team or through a difficult moment was hard work on the training ground

2020 02 17b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard blasted VAR on Monday after Harry Maguire was not sent off following a controversial kick-out at Michy Batshuayi] Harry Maguire should have been sent off, that’s clear, and that obviously changes the game. [Cesar] Azpilicueta gets shoved [into Brandon Williams] so [Antonio Rudiger’s] goal should stand. Giroud was a toenail offside and that one I understand. That’s the rule now. I don’t get why they aren’t looking at the monitor. It should be used

It was a tough night for Batshuayi. Strikers are judged on goals, it’s a fact. We need goals from forward areas and we haven’t had that this season. We can’t rely on Tammy Abraham all season. You get judged as an attacker on goals

It’s tough to take on lots of levels, some footballing, some others. It’s football and it’s life. I’m not complaining about any work ethic from the lads, their heads are down in there. It’s a tough night for us. It’s not a 2-0 game. We have a feeling of Groundhog Day in the stadium. I don’t know how many shots we had but it was a lot. If we don’t score, you can’t win football games. They get clearer every week. We are fourth and the season starts here. People didn’t expect us to be fourth but we are. We are fourth because of some of the good stuff we have done and because of the nature of the league with everyone taking points off each other. I’m not soft, I can criticise the team. We can bemoan our luck sometimes, yes, but if we are not finishing chances we can’t win games. I feel like a broken record

2020 02 21 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has played down Jose Mourinho’s injury complaints about Harry Kane and Son Heung-min] I think we all feel the same as managers. When you have big players injured, you know how much you miss them. But they also have a big squad. As I said, we had five huge ones in pre-season and four or five at the moment.

You will feel that and I understand his feelings because you want all your top players fit. But it doesn’t make me think they’re any weaker, whatever Jose says. I know we’ve got a tough team coming tomorrow. An incredible player like Harry Kane is a miss and now Son is a miss, but with Harry Kane, it always amazed me the stats when [Mauricio] Pochettino was the manager and Harry Kane was injured a few times.

They remained a force because they had players that could fill in. When you are talking about players like Dele Alli, whose game is to arrive from slightly behind and break lines consistently, Lucas Moura is similar and he has qualities, [Steven] Bergwijn has come in and has those similar qualities. I have watched a lot of them recently and they are a threat. This is a London derby against Tottenham, I think whatever team they put out will always be a threat in this type of game

[Lampard has defended Mason Mount’s finishing and insists that runs of poor form are normal for players of his age] I know Mason from working with him that he’s tough on himself. I know since the Tottenham game [where he performed well] that he will want to have more output in terms of assists and goals because that’s what he’s very capable of.

He’s fine, he’s very aware of that. I have very honest conversations with Mason and he wants the best for himself and I see it out there every day. Even if those goals and assists aren’t quite coming, he will fight his way through it, no problem.

Individually you suffer periods of form and as a young player, you have to understand even more and be more sensitive to the fact that can affect confidence because they’ve been thrust into the team this year and it’s new and the eyes of the world are on them, and that’s a big deal.

It’s a test for the younger players and I think with the physical nature of the league over the year it was always going to come, we would have little dips, and how they come out of it would be the making of them. It’s always the same. It’s how they train, it’s how they work, it’s the focus that they have which will bring them through. I believe in all fo them, whether they’re in dips or not. I believe they’ll all be top players for this club but they have to keep pushing and they have to be strong in moments like this

[Loftus-Cheek will soon return to boost the squad] He had a small issue and we felt it wasn’t right to risk him [for the recent Under-23s game against Arsenal]. It was tiny, but it was one of those we wanted to control a bit more so we came away from that. He still needs match fitness. Putting him in the squad is a question of, ‘Can he make an impact if he has to come on?’ I can already see his impact and what he brings. I knew it already, but to see the level in training first-hand has been nice. Can he sustain that over 90 minutes at the moment? No. We’ll have to work towards that

2020 02 21b Retrieve

[Lampard offers his latest fitness update] N’Golo is not fit, muscle injury. Similar to Arsenal. Hopefully three weeks. Pulisic not fit, no exact date. A difficult injury. Ruben is in the squad. Not fit to start, but in the squad. Andreas went to get a mask and has trained with it. Available for selection. Tammy has trained the last two days. Probably 70%. He is in the squad

This season is a transitional year, and fans appreciate that. Not many teams have had our injuries. Kante has played 50% of the games. The fans respect that and they see what we try to do. They will be there to support us. It is tight at the moment and we need the fans behind us. The players will give everything

[Quizzed on whether he feels under pressure] I always feel it, because this is top sport. I thrive on it. I have enjoyed this week. It was disappointing to lose on Monday [against United], but this is the challenge for us. Everyone probably wrote us off for top four. It is a process and the pressure is always there

2020 02 21c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says of Christensen] I think he has got a broken nose now. Callum for the weekend? No. Pulisic, no. Tammy is a maybe. It is not going our way at the minute on injuries. It is frustrating

2020 02 22 Retrieve

[Chelsea remain in fourth place in the Premier League, now four points ahead of Tottenham, and while Lampard was pleased to have beaten his old boss to three points, he was unforgiving in his assessment of the VAR fiasco] It is not good enough, that is two VAR [decisions against us] in two games. It’s hard to shout about it when you’ve lost but today everybody saw that. It is a red. I hate to call for red cards but that is a leg breaker. I am not saying [anything] about referees on the spot, [but] VAR is here to clear things up and it is not good enough

2020 02 22b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard fumes at VAR after Giovani Lo Celso ‘leg-breaker’] It’s not good enough. It’s not good enough, I’m sorry. It’s two VARs now in two games [after two goals were disallowed in the defeat to Manchester United]. It’s harder to speak about it when you’ve lost because people are claiming you’re just shouting, but maybe you need to shout, because that’s not good enough. Everybody in the football world saw that that was a red. And it’s too late, too late to do that. The game should be over [at 2-0]. I hate to call for red cards, but when they’re endangering… That’s a leg-breaker of a tackle. You get VAR brought into the game to see it and give the right decision. I’m not saying anything about the referees on the spot - it’s not easy on the spot - VAR’s here to clear those up. I’m not surprised they’ve put it right, but it’s not good enough

2020 02 22c Retrieve

[Lampard insists that youth isn’t a problem for Chelsea] I don’t think it’s inexperience. You can look at the youth in the squad and perhaps that’s an easy conclusion. Perhaps that’s part of it but it’s not easy to pinpoint. The clinical nature of not scoring, the sloppy nature of having a lapse which gives a team with one or two shots a goal, which has happened a couple of times at home. Is it experience, quality? There’s a lot of things to it.

This period is what all Premier League clubs suffer. As young players you have to be even more aware that it can affect their confidence, because they’re new to the team and the eyes of the world are on them. It’s a big deal and a test for the younger players and I think with the physical nature of the league over the course of the season then there were always going to be little dips.

The players will certainly come out of it better. It’s how they train, how they play. I believe in all of them and think they’re all going to be top players for this club, but they have to keep pushing and get out of moments like this

We obviously want to keep our best players. Kante is an incredible player, everyone knows that. At the end of the day, no matter what the quality of the player, you want players who want to be here at Chelsea and push to close the gap upwards. It’s a question for the end of the season. The player you mention [Kante] – we want to be adding to players like that

2020 02 23 Retrieve

[Lampard happy to still have Olivier Giroud at Chelsea after January transfer to Inter fell through] He has always been engaged even when he has not been playing, he has been engaged. I said it during the window; he has been absolutely fantastic from start to now. That is why he can put in those performances when he comes in. Personality on the pitch, personality in the dressing room, quality to finish, selfless in his ways. He’s our player now. In January it might have changed, it didn’t, and I’m happy with that and we move on.

He is strong; he has been around, won the World Cup, very good with the younger players around him, wants to train at a high level every day, understands his game, his attributes and how important he can be. The way the team worked helped Oli, and he helped the team. To have competition in that area is what we have been lacking. We have lacked goals from forward areas, not just in strikers, across the front

[Lampard thinks that Chelsea need to adjust their tactics and mentality when Giroud plays to get the most out of his talents] It’s hard to isolate two different games, you can’t expect things always to work out or for strikers to score every week. Today, in everything we did, we had two very energetic forwards around him, and with Oli you sometimes have to adapt because of what he brings. It’s different to Tammy and Michy. So, we adapt. That’s partly Oli and partly the team around him

2020 02 24 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says he is unconcerned by the threat of Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski ahead of their Champions League meeting] It doesn’t concern me. He’s been so consistent for years. His goalscoring record, everything about him from a distance is top class. I’ve watched quite a lot of Bayern and that shines through. He’s the spearhead but they have a lot of threats. The levels have to go up in the knockout stages. The levels must go up everywhere

[when asked if the German side could go on to win the competition] Yes, for sure. The talent and unity - they are top of the Bundesliga for a reason. It’s a club that overcomes difficulties because of the strength, the structure. I have huge respect for them. Every year they can win the Champions League but our job is to try and stop them

2020 02 25 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Bayern Munich taught Chelsea a harsh lesson] That’s football at this level. The levels of Bayern Munich were fantastic, they’re a really strong team, I was aware of that. Unless we were to get everything right and bang on, it was going to be tough. We didn’t get everything bang on. We weren’t confident on the ball, which was my biggest disappointment. A harsh lesson, a reality of the levels we want to get to – this is Champions League football. As a club haven’t been fighting in the knockouts for some years and this is the reality of what it takes

They need to use this positively. They won’t feel it this evening but what they need to do is understand the levels of the Champions League when you get to the knockout stage. A lot of players there today either haven’t played in it, played Europa League which is a big difference or played it a few years ago, certainly not at Chelsea when we got to successive semi-finals and finals and winning it. The only answer, young or old, is to not look at any part of the team other than yourself. Ask ‘who was I up against, who was my direct competitor, how did I do against them?’ We need to say tonight wasn’t a night where we showed that and we need to take responsibility

[Chelsea are fourth but only three points clear of Manchester United and four ahead of Tottenham and Sheffield United after 27 matches] There’s nothing else other than the fact of being real of where we are. We’re now fighting to finish in the top four, because we want to improve in the [off season]. We also have to go to Munich and play with a lot of pride to see what we can do there and today was just a clear show that there’s a lot of work to be done. I felt that when I took the job, felt it all the way through and we’ll keep working, we all need to

2020 02 25b Retrieve

[Outclassed: Lampard’s Chelsea taught a harsh lesson by brilliant Bayern] The performance was poor and sometimes you have to be brutally honest. They outclassed us in every department and it’s quite sobering

2020 02 28 Retrieve

[Lampard frustrated with Willian’s contract comments] It’s an ongoing conversation. Maybe not ideal timing but I don’t want to get too drawn into it because I am the manager of the team and don’t want to look too far [ahead]. Some of the headlines this week had a sense of frustration for me because we’re working day-to-day to finish this season and we’re not jumping ahead to the summer. Willy’s one is an ongoing situation. It’s not over. We’ll see

[Lampard says that he has a difficult task picking a centre-back from his options] I have four centre-backs to choose from, so generally every week two of them are unhappy. And then people question you when you stick with a back two or back three. There is competition in that area. With Fiks, he always has to train at the top level, that goes for all of the young players because when you are out of the team, however much it hurts, you need to show a good attitude and train very well. At the moment he is and he has a long career ahead of him at this club, without a doubt. It’s been more about selection issues

[He believes that his young players have made a big impact on the squad] Sometimes it’s been the young lads earlier this season who have stepped up and that was great. And sometimes they have had it difficult. So I don’t get too caught up in that conversation. Maturity will come for them, that’s why we have to give them some leeway this year. For Mason and Reece on Tuesday night it was a huge game for them in terms of their learning curve

I didn’t play my first Champions League game until I think my mid-twenties and for me it was an uplift for me at that level, let alone at their age. Reece was playing at Wigan in the Championship and Mason was at Derby with myself. And now they are going up against Thiago and the flying machine Davies from Bayern, who is an incredible looking player - and Gnabry as well. It was a huge test. Make no bones about it. It was a difficult night for them.

It’s not just those players. Kovacic has been to the final with Real Madrid, Azpi has been to the semi-final here. But if you go through the rest of the starting eleven, there are players who are either new to Champions League football - with Ross I think it was his first knock-out stage - or they are players who have got to the last 16.

We have to be real, we have to be honest. We can’t pull the wool over our own eyes and think all of a sudden we have a divine right at this level to go up against Bayern Munich and beat them. There’s a reason why we are where we are at the moment. We have not challenged in the Premier League for a couple of years. We have to fight and work as hard as we can on the training pitch and in games to close that gap. Come the summer, we want to move forward and make some decisions. But the gap is there. Tuesday showed that. But that should not dishearten us - now it’s how we finish the season.

I think the landscape of the Premier League has changed. Man City and Liverpool have set incredible standards in the league, and also we had some outside influences with the ban and with circumstance, a huge player left the club. Those things are there. We are certainly on the same page here when I speak with the board and we have all our conversations, there is no doubt we know we are fighting for fourth place.

It is a very dated phrase, when people say: ‘You’re Chelsea, there’s no way you should be happy with fourth’. No, the Premier League has changed. It is not like it was for Manchester United players 15 or 20 years ago, or Chelsea players when we were first or second for a period in the mid-2000s. It’s not like that any more and that is the reality. We do want to climb and bridge the gap and I strongly believe we will. But I am very aware of what that is. The players need to be aware of it and we are as a club

2020 02 28b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits Chelsea lost the Premier League’s best player in Hazard] We couldn’t control the ban. We lost the best player in the Premier League in Eden Hazard. We are trying to improve on the training pitch. We have shown we can get into fourth and now we have to kick on

[Lampard said of the Kepa speculation] My relationship is fine. I can’t keep every player happy. But the professionalism is there from him. Every player is in control of their own decision. Caballero is training well and performing well. I will decide as we go. I have read a lot of false articles of guessing players. All I am focusing on is game by game. Then there are decisions for the club

2020 02 28c Retrieve

[Lampard offers several Chelsea Players’s fitness update] Christian Pulisic is injured. [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) injured, Tammy Abraham injured. We are trying to find a solution with Tammy. It’s the same. At the moment he is not doing anything active for a couple of days. But we don’t know the length

It has been longer. It was to be a lot less. But I had a similar injury when I was a player, so I can sympathise. I know it can be a delicate injury. The way Pulisic was playing, the hot patch, the ability to go past players

[Lampard said of Ruben Loftus-Cheek] Ruben is in the squad again. It would mean a lot for him. It is a lonely place to be injured. With the ability that he has got he is one of the most exciting English midfield players

[Lampard added on a thrilling battle for Champions League qualification] When you look around and the form of [Manchester] United, a strong unit and spent well last summer, similar with Tottenham and you can’t write off Arsenal. Wolves FC and Sheffield United, you have to respect them, they are good teams. We have a fight on. Anyone who is in range has a chance

2020 02 29 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard admits his Chelsea side are not clinical enough at present] We expected a fight and they gave us a difficult game but we should win the game, we had a lot of possession and chances. The character of the team was great, it wasn’t for the want of trying but we need more goals. Marcos Alonso has had a big week but I don’t want my left-back top of the scoring charts. I want our attackers scoring goals and they haven’t. We wanted to win, we should have won but it’s a difficult league. It’s that cut throat part of the season. If we keep having games like this and we are not clinical it’s tough. The way the season has panned out, we should be pleased that we are fourth but it means nothing at this stage. If we manage to get in the top four the achievement is huge but we are a long way from that yet

We should win, we had many chances. We had a bad 10-minute spell where they scored and that I don’t like. I’m pleased with the character to get a draw but we should win the game. Against Bayern we conceded twice in a short space of time, it’s not the first time. Could it be a lack of concentration? Possibly from the players. People talk about the defence but if you are 1-0 up and leave teams in the game then one set piece can change the game. We should score more goals and then we don’t have that problem

2020 03 01 Retrieve

[Lampard: No timeframe on Christian Pulisic, Callum Hudson-Odoi or Tammy Abraham’s recovery for Chelsea] I am hoping [Callum] will be fit for next Sunday. Christian is the same as Tammy. There is no clear answer. [Tammy] went to Barcelona, to have a look at his ankle for some more advice on it.

We will have to work around [Jorginho’s suspensions in the league and Champions League], we have players who can play there. Kovacic finished in the holding role, Ross Barkley, Mason Mount, Billy Gilmour, there are solutions and there might be opportunities for other players.

[Loftus-Cheek] may get in the Under-23s game on Monday, he missed the opportunity here, he had a small calf injury a week or two ago which stopped him playing in the Under-23s game that I wanted him to and I would like to see him complete a whole game.

It wouldn’t be fair on him to bring him on for 15 minutes and it probably wouldn’t be the right thing for the team at the moment. Once he shows he can go through a game, he will probably be back in

We miss them of course because of what they bring and they can go by people. They can travel well with or without the ball. They are two big players who we have missed, particularly Christian for quite a while now

It’s Liverpool. Our fans want us to overturn the best team in the land, it doesn’t mean I don’t change a couple of people, fresh legs or a couple of different options but I won’t pick a team casually and be giving minutes. I will be treating it with the care I would give a Premier League game

2020 03 01b Retrieve

[Lampard on Tomori’s error in diving in to challenge] It’s hard to create actual situations like someone out-jumping your man or someone diving in and getting done when they shouldn’t do as a centre-back

2020 03 02 Retrieve

[Lampard: Chelsea could model themselves on Liverpool to return to the top] We’ve seen the Liverpool journey and it’s an incredible story. I remember them linking and raising their arms when they drew 0-0 with West Brom. Probably slightly ridiculed for it at the time but it is now symbolic of the journey of this team that is now an absolute machine, rolling everyone over until the last game. So, it’s a reference point in terms of when you see what a work in progress looks like. It can take time and behind a team that wins so many on the bounce is a lot of sweat and hard work from everyone involved, which is what I am trying to do here. There will be tough times, many tough times, when I’ll be questioned, [the players will] be questioned. We have to stay tough within that

As part of their journey, they have signed some fantastic players at the right times, ones that feel pivotal. Virgil van Dijk and Alisson, the keeper – they have a great knack of signing the right player at the right time that suits the way they want to play and keep moving forward. It’s a great model in those terms but I don’t want to look anywhere near like I’m comparing us now. I’m under no illusions but what I do understand is that behind their story is a lot of hard work they have been prepared to do

That will always be something that will not be in my control. And you have to look at the landscape changing. That is the debate, about where we are as a club now and what squad we have now to what we have had in previous years. We just have to work with what is in front of us and that is to try to win games. There’ll be many managers in the Premier League this year that will be looking at their wins or points totals and it’s nowhere near where they were at different times because this league has proved very competitive – barring Liverpool of course and a bit of Manchester City. But the rest of us are fighting for consistency and fighting to improve. I think Chelsea fans do understand that

I haven’t discussed it with him and I can only pick the team as I see it from a Chelsea point of view. It’s not one I jump ahead to broach. I keep coming back to the same thing: it’s how well you train, and he is training well, and when you get the opportunity to play, how well you play. He must have a positive attitude and I think I’m a pretty fair man – I don’t know if all the players will say that! Maybe 11 will tomorrow and then another 11 next week! That’s the nature of my job. I only call it as I see it, as I see training and performances. So I hope all the players remain positive and, of course, he can play for his country. He’s shown that already. He’s been number one at times ahead of David de Gea, who is a fantastic, world-class goalkeeper, so that hopefully isn’t a big issue at the moment. He’s training every day to be ready for us when needed

2020 03 02b Retrieve

[Lampard confirms Kepa Arrizabalaga could return to Chelsea line up for FA Cup clash with Liverpool] Yes, Kepa [is in contention]. He has been professional as expected, trained well and kept his head down, supporting the team and the group. He has been good, but I say the same every week as I get asked this every week

Yeah, every player is in control of their destiny in how they train and how they play. This is Chelsea and we’re trying to close the gap to the top, so there can be no one who is relaxed or loose, we have to push every day. And try to win the game in front of us, train well on the day in front of you. Of course, we have to look at the group in the summer. But there are no decisions beyond the game tomorrow night as far as I’m concerned

We will field a team that gives everything to get into the next round against a very strong Liverpool team. The team I put out should give everything to compete with Liverpool, as we have done twice this season. We’ve competed very well against them and were probably unfortunate to lose on both occasions. So we have to approach it with the same spirit. We want to win it [the FA Cup] but winning something is usually a phrase that has gone out of the Premier League unless you are Manchester City or Liverpool, pretty much, in the last couple of years. They have made so many strides and gone out on their own slightly so we have to understand that the landscape has changed and try to bridge the gap

We would expect Liverpool to put out a strong team, I presume they will play their strongest team, there or thereabouts. We know whatever team they put out they will give us a very strong match. We have to play with a big spirit and we will have to be at our best. Their defeat against Watford won’t make it any easier for us. With the type of manager and players that they have, it can be a wake-up call in a good way as well. It depends on how you take it. When you look at them they look like a team of fantastic professionals with a manager who is very driven. So things like that can make this game even harder for us. They became relatively human for one game, that can happen in this Premier League which is incredibly competitive. It shows how well they have done in the last year or so, especially this season

2020 03 02c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has questioned the mentality of his Chelsea players] It’s a mindset. Every game’s different, but you have to have a mindset within the group, on the pitch, because those things are not unexpected. We spoke at half-time, for instance, about what may happen, what they may do, and then you rely on the players on the pitch. So together they have to solve issues. It’s been a problem. It’s always collective. As a group, we can’t be happy with it. This group has young players and experienced players and you can’t be happy when you have moments when you concede like that. I don’t think it matters how young you are, it isn’t naivety, I think there is a concentration issue. We have to concentrate even more.

Games change with goals – the atmosphere in the stadium, the feelings of the other team. Sometimes you need to dig in and concentrate that little bit more as a group. We’ve been tested with that a lot and we talk about it a lot, but the players have to find a solution on the pitch.

At the other end of the scale, I think if we are clinical with our chances those moments aren’t there so much. Leaving games at 1-0 or 0-0 always gives the other team a chance

2020 03 03 Retrieve

[Lampard expresses his worry about coronavirus] As a manager, yes. As a father, yes. As a husband, yes. I think we are all in the same boat as far as that is concerned. We are taking all the right courses of action here within the club and I am as concerned as the rest of us, I guess

2020 03 03b Retrieve

[Lampard keeping Chelsea grounded after Liverpool upset] [I’m] really proud because they [Liverpool] are the best team in the land. Them and Man City have proven that in the last two years, but this year, what they’re doing in the league is incredible. So for us to put in the effort, the focus, the determination, the quality we put into the game was something special tonight. It’s a one-off and we know, are very aware, there’s a lot of work and a long way to go to get to where we want to go but you have to celebrate those moments. Particularly when you get a second [goal] because you know how dangerous Liverpool are until the last minutes, so to go 2-0 up was great

2020 03 03c Retrieve

[Lampard confirms Achilles injuries for Willian and Mateo Kovacic after Liverpool win] Both have got an Achilles issue. Willian hopefully is not too bad, that is what he is reporting there so we will see how he is tomorrow. Kovacic’s feels slightly worse. Hopefully not too drastic, so we’ll see

2020 03 04 Retrieve

[Lampard hails Pedro after FA Cup victory against Liverpool] I agree he was outstanding in work ethic and players look up to him for what he has done. Always a goal threat. Parts of the season have been difficult. He was in the team at the start, got injured and then got out of the team, but what he has shown, particularly in recent weeks, is a real desire in training, to look sharp, to be giving advice and giving the place a lift with his body language. He can be one of our most important players until the end of the season. He is an infectious player

2020 03 04b Retrieve

[Gilmour deserves people talking about him after Chelsea showing] What an incredible performance for a young player. He was a calm head in that first five or 10 minutes. He’s a throwback of a midfielder. Can you put your foot in? Yes. Can you make angles to play the passes? Yes. He’s only slight in stature but he’s huge in personality. He deserves people to talk about him after a performance like that

[The Blues boss has made the most of the club’s academy over the past few months and suggested Gilmour is now very much in his plans moving forward] I’ve got absolute trust in Billy. When you watch him play, I remember when we drew against Sheffield United and people asked me after the game ‘This kid looks like a 15 year old’. But I’ve no problem with him because if he is small in stature he is huge in personality and talent

For me when I look at a midfield player I ask: does he want to receive the ball in all positions - yes he does. Does he pick the right pass - yes he generally does. Will he put his foot in - yes he does. All his family were here tonight from Scotland. What a performance

2020 03 06 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard lauded Carlo Ancelotti as a fantastic manager] He is a gentleman, a fantastic manager. It was a good season under him. He is a great man-manager. On a personal level, he’s great at striking up relationships. He’s good tactically and has a great manner. I kept in touch with him now and again

It’s tough, Callum Hudson-Odoi wasn’t rushed back, we had all the signs that he was fit to train. Then he re-injured it on his first training session with us. So it’s frustrating for him definitely, a young boy who’s keen to play, as you’d expect, and it’s frustrating because it’s another injury to us. It hasn’t been spoken about that much, but we’ve had probably the worst injury list of certainly the top group of the table I think, lots of numbers injured, important players injured, Kante, Loftus-Cheek etcetera. We started the season that way and it’s happened again in the middle of the season, and we’re working against that to try to get the best results

2020 03 06b Retrieve

[Lampard believes footballers deserve credit for resisting fan hatred in light of Eric Dier incident] I thought it was a pretty natural reaction from Eric Dier, I think you if you asked the man or woman in the street, if one of your family members needed protection, your natural reaction would be to go there. Because we are in the sport that we are in, I thought Jose Mourinho said it pretty well afterwards, you are not supposed to, not allowed to as such, but when you talk about natural reactions, I understand it, particularly with a family member.

I didn’t see anything go beyond slightly heated, which is good thing, so we will see how it is dealt with, but I think it should be understood that if Dier saw his brother in a situation, then I understand his thought process. I think its what it was, I took some abuse over the years, I have seen teammates take abuse, I know some of my family members and friends that have been in earshot of abuse, so I don’t think it has changed. I think players should be given a lot of credit sometimes that they hold themselves in certain moments, I think they could be. We talk about certain types of hate in the game, and we analyse them, and then other types of hate seemingly are ok to say something to you or about your family. I have heard all of that and sometimes you don’t pick up on it and its all ok because of the pantomime nature of football. You walk into the stadium, and you don’ live by the same rules you would Iive by in the street.

I think that has not changes, maybe social media has made it worse around, day to day, minute to minute, off the pitch, some people sit and watch a game at home and spend 89 mins of the 90 tweeting, or posting their thoughts on the game rather than watching it. It is unfortunate

[Kepa Arrizabalaga returned to the starting line up after missing the last five matches due to poor form] Yeah, it’s given me thoughts. Arrizabalaga did very well, it’s exactly what I wanted from him and I understand that that’s not easy because everyone looks to the goalkeeper more than an outfield player. All eyes are on and I’ve mentioned in the weeks before that he’s been professional in how he’s handled it when has been out of the team. He came in and did exactly what I want so he’s given me good thinking

2020 03 06c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard delivered mixed news on the fitness front] Hudson-Odoi had a re-injury and is having a scan later today. It’s tough for him. He wasn’t rushed back. He did it training back with us. It’s another injury for us. It hasn’t been spoken about it that much but we have had the worst injury list. We are working against that to try and get the best results

Kovacic not fit and Willian we will assess him, he is a question mark for the weekend

[Tammy Abraham is making positive progress in his recovery from an ankle problem] Tammy Abraham, who is making positive progress in his recovery from an ankle problem.

We had an in-house game which Christian and Loftus-Cheek played. I just watched it and they are trying to find match fitness. I’m not jumping ahead to the summer. We have a big job to do now

2020 03 07 Retrieve

[Lampard: Barkley wants more from his Chelsea career after having the wonderkid tag] I have choices not just in Ross but in that area. All the players have been out at times. Ross probably had a longer time out and had an injury that was a niggly one that was around for the best part of six weeks. Some of that was around the early part of the season where Ross wasn’t getting in. He could look at himself and say he could be doing better, probably. But Ross has taken that on in the most positive way possible. He has worked hard, got his nose in the team and he does need confidence as a player. I believe that. So, to try and play him, give him minutes, is always going to help with confidence. If he plays like he did against Liverpool and Tottenham recently, then he is going to be a big player for this club. I have been pleased with his recent performances and he needs to keep churning them out. I definitely know he has the intention to. I see it on the training pitch and how he holds himself every day in this period, so I am happy with Ross

[Lampard admits that it isn’t easy for players to deal with the hype] I never had that [wonderkid hype]. You see certain players have had that harder pressure at 18 years old and that’s not easy for anybody. The Premier League is competitive and tough. It is very easy to make those early conclusions on players without knowing there’s a long path and everyone’s route is different. What Ross can say is that he has moved on from it and come to Chelsea which is a big club. If he is playing games here at a big club then that’s a success. Gareth Southgate is very confident of picking him for England and he has played a lot of minutes for them. I know he will want more and I get that. He might be wishing he made more minutes by now and made more impact here at Chelsea. Some of that is competition for places and some of that is injuries he has had at different times in his career and the reality is there is no point on looking back on any of that. He can look back when he is 35 or 40 or something. I think Ross has a lot to offer.

I think players are different. Ross is different, Mason is different, Ruben Loftus-Cheek is different. I get that [he wants to be a goalscoring midfielder]. I think what Ross will be searching for is minutes to play regularly to get the consistency to do what he was able to do the other night against Liverpool because it is clearly within his powers. His shooting with his right foot and left foot is as good technically as I have seen on a training pitch. I knew that as a player. Also, his ability to go passed someone in advanced areas in midfield, his skill and ability to do that. So I think that’s well within his range so he couldn’t get too caught up in where he is at, where he is, what might have been other than to train every day which is what he is doing at the minute. When you see that, you see he is a really good player for us, so he can be that goal scoring midfielder. I don’t like to compare it for sure, but he can definitely be a good player for us. Not just a goalscoring midfielder, he can play, run and tackle. He can do a lot of things and he can do all that

2020 03 08 Retrieve

[Lampard: No sympathy for Gerrard at Rangers, he doesn’t need it] We all have the same pressures however it might look from the outside. So, I’m not talking about ‘sympathy’ because we’re both tough. I know Steven and he’s a hard lad. I mean that in a good way. I don’t want sympathy and I’m not going to hand sympathy or lessons or talks to Steven

2020 03 08b Retrieve

[Lampard denies Chelsea have found second wind after thrashing Everton] I’m a bit wary to say that. The last two performances would look like that, but I’m experienced enough to know we go to Aston Villa away, a team who are fighting for their lives and have got good players, so we have to replicate what we showed today every week.

Yes, we had a good early patch this season. Then we’ve had inconsistencies recently. Who hasn’t, other than Liverpool, in this league? I don’t accept those inconsistencies, obviously, but it’s understandable in this transitional period. But we had to work today to show we can finish the season with strength and get better.

[With [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) and Mateo Kovacic out injured and Jorginho suspended, Billy Gilmour made his first Premier League start alongside Mount and Ross Barkley in midfield and was named man of the match] He’s receiving the ball in difficult areas on the pitch. If you don’t move it quickly, firstly you don’t get the rhythm in our play and it breaks down from, and secondly if you give it away in those areas, it is dangerous.

I was going to use a rude word there, but you need… confidence to do that. Jorginho has it and Billy has it. One of the most pleasing things with Billy was he showed those balls in the first half, but when he stepped up and played higher up in the pitch second half, he instantly took it on board, arriving in the box and playing balls higher up the pitch. He showed he can do both, which is a great thing for me when I’m thinking about how the midfield looks at times.

[On whether he saw signs of maturity from his team after a tricky spell] I don’t think we’re there yet. It would be easy for me to say it after today but I’d much rather say it in mid-May, when the last game is. To think we’re there and to think that we’ve got over the issues, even at home, would be too over-confident and think we are all right. We are improving in big degrees. We have to keep working. I see a bigger picture, an even longer run than that. I think we have a gap that is big to Liverpool in terms of points. At the minute, it feels like we’re working in the right direction, but we’ve got lots of work to do

2020 03 09 Retrieve

[There was no [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html), Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic, Christian Pulisic or Callum Hudson-Odoi, yet the Blues were dynamic in midfield and incisive in attack. Indeed, a totally dominant performance has raised questions about whether the likes of Billy Gilmour, Ross Barkley and Pedro should now be considered first-choice in their respective positions] Look at how City play it with offensive No.10s working off the ball. You’re aware that when you play like that, you have to work harder. They (Mount and Barkley) had to protect Billy when the ball was on the other side. We had that talk, and they gave us that. When we had the ball, we had two really offensive players creating. The players and the midfield got that balance on the pitch right.

[In short, this was a near-perfect day for Lampard, one that has left him with the kind of selection headache he will actually welcome] It is encouraging. We’ll always need our squad and we’ve got a lot of injuries. But the only way to tackle that is to play at high energy and, today, it all came together: the energy, speed of pass, tempo. We need to keep our feet on the ground, but we saw some really good stuff today. The attitude and focus of the team was really strong. I could see that after Liverpool in midweek. We’ve missed focus sometimes. Maybe the challenge of the injuries worked out well today, as the application of the team was spot on

2020 03 10 Retrieve

[Teenage sensation Gilmour keeping Barkley on his toes as youngsters challenge established stars] He’s a brilliant player and he’s shown that in training, from last season to now. He showed that fearlessness out there and you can see the quality he’s got. With more games, he’s going to improve and the quality he’s going to show will get better as well. The future is bright. It’s good, it keeps us on our toes. Top four is our target and as each game comes, we take our game plan into it and try to execute it the way we need to.

2020 03 13 Retrieve

[Chelsea would reject any offer for Pedro] He was outstanding in terms of his work ethic and the other players look up to him for what he has done. Always a goal threat. Parts of the season have been difficult for him. He was in the team at the start, got injured and was then out of the team

But what he has shown, particularly in recent weeks, is a real desire in training to look sharp, to be giving advice and giving the place a lift with his body language. He can be one of our most important players until the end of the season

2020 03 17 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi has made great progress in his recovery from coronavirus] I’m happy to say that in Callum’s case, he has made great progress and almost feels his usual self, which is obviously the news we all want to hear

I am of course aware that not everyone can or will recover from this virus, so I urge all of the football and sporting community to continue to act responsibly and look out for the health of others.

I want to make it clear that I am no medical expert when it comes to challenging times such as these but please do take the time to call older relatives and vulnerable people who might be alone, or offer to drop round shopping if they can’t get out. Let’s make sure we all take care of each other.

Social distancing can leave us feeling isolated, however we can continue to support each other even if that means doing it remotely.

Of course we still don’t know when competitive football will restart, but it isn’t worth worrying about that too much at the moment. We all miss football, but right now it’s about acting responsibly and in the best interests of society. I am sure I wasn’t the only one who found myself in a strange place with no sport this weekend, but ultimately none of that matters when we consider the bigger picture

2020 03 19 Retrieve

[How Chelsea are dealing with coronavirus pandemic: From Hudson-Odoi’s recovery to Lampard’s training plan] Of course we still don’t know when competitive football will restart, but it isn’t worth worrying about that too much at the moment. We all miss football, but right now it’s about acting responsibly and in the best interests of society. I am sure I wasn’t the only one who found myself in a strange place with no sport this weekend, but ultimately none of that matters when we consider the bigger picture

2020 03 28 Retrieve

[Lampard wary of putting pressure on Chelsea players amid coronavirus uncertainty] It is very difficult at the moment because we have got nothing concrete in front of us. We have seen that things can change very quickly, so we can only go by the dates we have been given but daily or probably weekly we are looking at it saying, ‘Well, how do we train? What does it look like?’ The last thing I want to do when the players are in this position is to try and push and push and push [them] for no reason

Motivation can be slightly put to the side. I think the motivation at the moment for everyone is how their families are, how their relatives are, how we all see the outside world, and sometimes the realisation probably that there are things which are a lot more important than football. However much we love Chelsea and are fortunate to do our jobs, this has certainly hit home for that. For me, my message to the players has always been look after your family at this time

2020 03 28b Retrieve

[Kepa Arrizabalaga makes Chelsea transfer U-turn after tough season] Every player is in control of their destiny in how they train and how they play. This is Chelsea and we’re trying to close the gap to the top, so there can be no one who is relaxed or loose, we have to push every day.

And try to win the game in front of us, train well on the day in front of you. Of course, we have to look at the group in the summer. But there are no decisions beyond the game tomorrow night as far as I’m concerned.

Is he in the frame tomorrow? Yep. He’s been professional as expected, he’s trained well, kept his head down, supported the team, and the group

2020 04 13 Retrieve

[Lampard: Politicians painted wrong picture of Premier League footballers over coronavirus donations] I was very proud to be manager of this club with the way Chelsea handled it. They were very quick to respond to help with the hotel. There’s a lot more work they’ve been doing with the foundation, with link-ups, getting in touch with fans, with putting on tutorials from some of the academy coaches. There are a lot of people at Chelsea who have stood up with some good work. I think they needed some time and I think the politicians jumped the gun while things were being prepared. People behind the scenes knew that and it’s unfortunate that picture got painted. Since then a lot of players and clubs have stood up in a good way generally. Knowing the players and how they think, that’s been a very good reaction. And it’s ongoing and it shouldn’t stop. I think that reaction needs to continue. If there’s a light at the end of this tunnel, if there are things we can all learn, it’s how we give back and stick together.

My memory is of watching him as a player, but also memories of meeting him and what a gentleman he was. He was working in hospitality at Chelsea when I first arrived, working upstairs. [He was] so friendly with everyone that came to the game. Had time for everybody, absolute gentleman and a huge loss to Chelsea and to football

2020 04 13b Retrieve

[Lampard says Chelsea have multiple transfer plans depending on level of coronavirus disruption] We have the good young players, we have had experienced players around them that have helped them this year, but we know there are little areas within the squad [we can improve]. Some of that’s what we have already, some of that’s how we might look to recruit going forward. This period now with what’s going on in the world has made it very difficult to plan too much on [transfers], how this is going to look in weeks or months going forward. We have to have different versions of plans going forward in terms of how it looks

Going into this break I feel like we were moving in the right direction. With the continued work on the day-to-day attitude of my club and myself, and the players, and with bringing in players in key areas that we think can help us to try and bridge that gap to Liverpool and City. I don’t want to jump the gun because what Liverpool and Manchester City have done has been clear. I’d be a fool to suggest we can bridge that gap quickly because there has been a lot of hard work at those clubs in terms of recruitment of top players, of great coaches. We have to be part of that process. We have to do it our way, we can’t try to copy

2020 04 14 Retrieve

[Lampard sees shades of Scholes in Gilmour and agrees with ‘world-class’ assessment of Chelsea teenager] I had to put my cup of tea down to hear Roy say something nice! Keane was a fantastic midfield player and he probably won’t give credit unless it’s due – and it certainly was due. He’s right, I heard the statements he made about Billy and I think he’s spot on. Billy should be happy with that and if he can go and follow the ideas that someone like Roy Keane says when it comes to midfield play he won’t go far wrong

[The Blues manager, who spent 13 years at Stamford Bridge in his playing days, added] Paul Scholes is obviously one of the greatest midfield players I’ve played against in the Premier League. He would always pick the right pass, he had incredible range. If you did try and jump from midfield and get to him and get close to him he’d just play it around the corner because he knew you were coming. Billy has shown early signs of that kind of ability. I’m not comparing him to Scholesy, no way at all, but in terms of those basics that you mentioned, then Billy certainly has them and that’s a great platform to build hopefully a fantastic career.

2020 04 15 Retrieve

[Kante to stay at Chelsea unless he’s forced out amid reported Real Madrid & Barcelona interest] We have the good young players, we have had experienced players around them that have helped them this year, but we know there are little areas within the squad [we can improve]. Some of that’s what we have already, some of that’s how we might look to recruit going forward. This period now with what’s going on in the world has made it very difficult to plan too much on [transfers], how this is going to look in weeks or months going forward. We have to have different versions of plans going forward in terms of how it looks

2020 04 16 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has been impressed with the charitable response of his club] I have been watching it closely with a lot of people talking about it, and I completely understand what a lot of prominent people in football have said: that players will do the right thing. They needed some time, and I think the politicians jumped the gun while things were being prepared. People behind the scenes knew that. It was unfortunate that picture got painted. But since then a lot of players and clubs have stood up in a good way. Not every situation has been perfect, but knowing players and how they think, that’s been a very good reaction. It’s ongoing, and it shouldn’t stop. That reaction needs to continue. If there is a light at the end of this tunnel, if there are things we can all learn, it’s how we give back and how we stick together. It’s very easily said, it’s much harder done, and I think there have been a lot of good gestures that have shown that

2020 05 02 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard warns players must not get coronavirus tests ahead of key workers] The idea of the health and safety of the players is huge. The country has practiced social distancing so well and the fact we play this contact sport that we are so desperate to see for a form of escapism, if anything, so how are we not going to put the players at risk within that? The other issue is talking about the testing that we are going to be doing. We probably have 70 or 80 staff at Cobham, minimum, if we are going to restart training. If we’re going to test regularly, then that’s fine. But when when we’re looking around the world - and I don’t know the testing numbers for the NHS and careworkers, these people that are doing incredible roles over the last two months or so - I don’t think it would sit well, not just with me but with anybody, if we didn’t make sure the people that are getting tested are on that front line. That’s important for football to take its place. After that, we probably have the football issues, which would be neutral venues and out of contract players, of which we have a couple of major players, so there are many conversations and I think that’s very clear at the minute

2020 05 03 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has described [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) as one of the best players in the world] We had four or five of those [injured players] when we finished playing recently. [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) is obviously a great example because he’s played four or five incredible seasons in terms of his individual success and he’s been used quite rightly by his managers a lot. This season he’s played only about 40% of our games and even then it’s been difficult for him and I’ve really felt for him on an individual level. He’s been a huge miss for us. Looking forward, whenever a restart comes we want to get him in the best shape, want to get Ruben Loftus-Cheek in the best shape. We’ve had slightly different plans for them but they’ve been scuppered with what we’ve had to do. The players’ health comes first, the mental well-being of the players comes first. The self-isolation was tough at first because nobody really knew what it was about we are just trying to get those players who have had extra problems fitter and of course when we get a chance to get back to full training we can get them back to where we need them to be. We obviously need [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) back in our team, one of the best players in the world. I knew that before I became manager of Chelsea and know that now from working with him. I haven’t been able to have him much this year and going forward we, of course, want him fit and raring to go

2020 05 08 Retrieve

[Chelsea reopen training ground ahead of ‘Project Restart’ meeting as foreign players self-isolate] I’ll be having conversations with players and staff about how they feel about the situation regularly. In terms of how we have worked in the last period, the players have all been conforming to government regulations. We have plans and we have tried to vary it week-by-week. It has been a long time now with the players in this situation. Some of them have been able to go to Cobham if they live close to our training ground and work there in probably a safer environment. Of course, on their own and they all get their own slots so they don’t see anybody else who has just gone. I think most clubs are doing something similar. I think this is a leveller for all of football. Everybody is in the same boat and we have been just trying to do the right thing and the best thing in terms of keeping the players fit.

2020 05 16 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is hopeful that deals can be struck with Olivier Giroud and Willian if the Premier League season resumes] It is still uncertain if and when play will get underway. We have big players [out of contract] so that’s something I’m obviously looking at very carefully. The ones who are out of contract here have been great servants for the club, and actually have a lot of feelings for the club. Of course they’ll be concerned about themselves, in terms of how training is now and if the pre-season is a rush they’re going to have to make sure they’re alright. So it’s going to have to be something we have to look at, hopefully that arrangement can be made so they can stay with us. I would love the squad to look as it has all season, but we’ll have to see how that works

Everyone will handle those situations differently. People like Troy Deeney, you have to give the freedom to speak out, because people will be speaking from the heart. Their intentions and their feelings for their families are good. They want to get here and work. They can’t wait to get back and play football. I think the important part of my job at the moment is a lot of empathy with the players. You can’t just say: ‘Lads, we’re going this way,’ because this is a situation none of us have known. This is not a players’ strike, it’s not a player not wanting to train, or a player having an argument with another player, this is something that has affected everyone and their families

2020 05 19 Retrieve

[Chelsea exercise option to extend Caballero’s contract until 2021] We have big players [out of contract], so that’s something I’m obviously looking at very carefully. The ones who are out of contract here have been great servants for the club, and actually have a lot of feelings for the club. Of course, they’ll be concerned about themselves, but hopefully that arrangement can be made so they can stay with us. I would love the squad to look as it has all season, but we’ll have to see how that works

2020 05 20 Retrieve

[Chelsea renew Giroud’s contract until 2021] Since I have been back at Chelsea, Olivier has been brilliant as a professional and as a man in general

2020 05 20b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says Caballero is a vital member of the team and was impressed by his nine appearances in all competitions this term] I trust in Willy, he trains brilliantly and is a great professional. He stepped into the team earlier this year and showed his quality, and his experience is invaluable in the dressing room. I’m delighted he will be with us next season.

2020 05 20c Retrieve

[Giroud set to remain at Chelsea as club announces contract extension] Since I have been back at Chelsea, Olivier has been brilliant as a professional and as a man in general. He has great qualities to help the squad both on and off the pitch, not only with his talent but with the example he sets every day and the experience he brings to our young squad. I am very pleased that will continue next season

2020 05 22 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has already expressed his concern at potentially losing both Pedro and Willian] It is still uncertain if and when play will get underway. We have big players [out of contract] so that’s something I’m obviously looking at very carefully. The ones who are out of contract here have been great servants for the club, and actually have a lot of feelings for the club. Of course they’ll be concerned about themselves, in terms of how training is now and if the pre-season is a rush. They’re going to have to make sure they’re alright. So it’s going to have to be something we have to look at. Hopefully an arrangement can be made so they can stay with us. I would love the squad to look as it has all season, but we’ll have to see how that works

2020 05 23 Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Lampard expects standard dip behind closed doors but welcomes return of ‘proper football’] It’s certainly proper football. There are clear things that are going to be affected, you may not get to the level of what we get with crowds because that’s why the Premier League is for me the best in the world, because our home fans drive us on and that’s why home advantage is so important but when you go away, that hostility and tribalism sometimes drives you on as well. It’s a beautiful thing. Of course it’s football [the behind-closed-door games]. There will be things that are different and I’ll have to speak to the players about that but when there’s three points and when you’re playing for your team and you want to get somewhere in the league, then of course the focus is there

One of the things for me as a manager that I’ve learnt in this two-month period is that communication is so key. When we went into isolation we all felt like we went into this crazy bubble that we’re not used to. Me sending messages to the players and asking how they felt was so important. I didn’t want to bombard them so they were bored of me but I did want them to know that I’m here. As the talk of restarting came it was an important conversation that we had collectively. Everybody is different and we’ve seen that with the reaction of players and that has to be respected in all ways. We work every day as a family and a team and we’ll respect everyone and how they feel about the restart and coming back to work

2020 05 25 Retrieve

[Lampard aware he must ‘upset 10 to 15 players’ as he accepts Chelsea critique] I know that a manager is going to upset 10 to 15 of his players every week and make decisions that people are going to be unhappy about and scrutinise. I think you just have to accept that as part of it, and I try not to make that the focal point. I try to see the bigger picture and think, if I can be honest and up front with the players – which is not always easy – then the players will respect you in the end, even if they are upset when they’re walking down that corridor. That’s how I felt as a player and I certainly respected the managers who were up front with me, even if they were giving me bad news sometimes

I wouldn’t say players spoke about it much. I think players tend to be very much in the moment and I probably was like that to a degree as well. I wouldn’t have sat there and spoken too much with other players about it, and some of my former team-mates who have gone into management have surprised me. I’ve read that some others are surprised I’ve done it, because of how I was as a player. I wasn’t always hugely vocal in the dressing room as vice-captain, I wasn’t expected to be, because of the attributes John [Terry] had and the slightly different ones I had

2020 06 01 Retrieve

[Lampard looking for ‘a few additions’ as Chelsea draw up plans for next transfer window] I’m certainly excited about the squad we’ve got, with the young players and if we can get a few additions for areas I feel we need. We didn’t bring in anyone in January, it didn’t work out to be right for us at the time, and last summer we couldn’t bring anyone in, so those windows are gone and we haven’t changed. So I am excited about the squad we’ve got, if we can freshen up in the right areas we all know that

2020 06 05 Retrieve

[Lampard takes a leaf out of Liverpool’s book to sign right player at right time] As part of their journey, they have signed the right players at the right times; ones that feel pivotal. Virgil van Dijk, Alisson – they have a great knack of signing players that suit the way they want to play and help them keep moving forward. It’s a great model in those terms but I don’t want to look anywhere near like I’m comparing us now. I’m under no illusions about that but what I do understand is that behind their story can be attributed to the hard work that they have been prepared to do

[Lampard has been aware for some time, though, that he has an issue to address up front. In February, for example, he was clearly frustrated by the fact that it was left to full-back Marcos Alonso to earn his side a draw at Bournemouth] The character of the team was great but we need more goals. Marcos Alonso has had a big week but I don’t want my left-back top of the scoring charts. I want our attackers scoring goals and they haven’t been

The character of the team was great but we need more goals. Marcos Alonso has had a big week but I don’t want my left-back top of the scoring charts. I want our attackers scoring goals and they haven’t been

2020 06 07 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has opened up on the difficult preparations for upcoming behind-closed-doors games] In football terms, you prepare pretty much the same. There will definitely be different variables around the game now. We’ll have to try to make sure we prepare as well as we can in terms of being ready for the change in atmosphere. We’ve had discussions about that with the players. It will be different for everyone. It may change the pace of the game, it might change the slight tone of it. We’ve seen that slightly in Germany and we need to be ready to adapt to that. All we can do really is get ourselves as fit as possible. That’s been a difficult task in the short term, to get fit when we’re used to longer pre-seasons. We have worked hard on that, and when it comes to match days we’ll have to make sure we’re very ready for the changes from the norm, and make sure it doesn’t affect our performance on the pitch

With so much time off, and so much time to sit and scrutinise the table and your positions, for everyone, there is going to be so much spotlight on this. Every game now in the nine league games is going to have something on it for different reasons. The first two games are good examples of that. Villa are fighting for their lives, City have huge quality, we know that. It’s a difficult start and we’ll need to be ready

2020 06 19 Retrieve

[Lampard hoping to have Willian and Pedro contribute despite contract uncertainty] We want them to extend their stay and make sure they can see out the season. I see both sides. I see the individual player because I was one, and I respect that they have both been great servants to the club. I’ve had nothing but open conversations with them. We’re just trying to make that extension happen. The players have to be happy. We have to be happy. Hopefully, we can get there before the 23rd of June, next week, because that’s the day we have to get it done by. Anyone around us knows that. So we will keep talking and hopefully they stay on.

Pedro is certainly available. He actually had a bit of a bang on his ankle last week but he’s fit and wanting to train. He’s going to get some painkillers. It’s one of those impact kind of injuries that hang around a bit but he’s training well. So is Willian. I have got absolutely no worries about motivation. They are both top class professionals and have been great servants to the club. They’ve trained really well in this last three-and-a-half week period, which has been a tough physical period for them. I’ve got no issues at all with their motivation. Every time they put on a Chelsea shirt, as they have done for years, they will give everything.

I’m very happy that in the eyes of the law it’s been sorted out. That was my main concern at first. So that’s positive for us. I’m very sympathetic to the idea that we’re not angels or saints and we make mistakes, particularly at a young age. I will never be one to come down too harshly, albeit we have had conversations, myself and Callum. The big conversations with Callum now is to make sure he learns his lesson from what happened. He broke lockdown and that wasn’t good enough. He has admitted that and we move on. The next thing is to train consistently at a really high level to work hard in training every day. He came back from lockdown and got injured early in this period so now he has to work hard to get fit again. As much as the pitfalls off the pitch I want to see how he can work on the training pitch and get into this team, and perform to levels we all believe he can. It doesn’t come easy. That’s the big thing I say to Callum a lot and something he really has to take on board now

2020 06 19 Retrieve

[Lampard insists Chelsea won’t need to sell Kante to finance Werner move] In terms of N’Golo, I’ve seen some talk and reports about him and his future at the club. I’ve said it a lot of times about N’Golo - one of the best midfield players in the world. I would have loved to be able to play with him. The type of player he is, he has everything. Coming back to Chelsea and getting the opportunity to manage this club and having [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) is something I really want to appreciate and work with. This season, unfortunately, because of injuries, it’s been tough for N’Golo. It’s nice to see him a little bit fresh. One of the silver linings with this is we’ve managed to get a few players fitter and fresher. N’Golo is so important to us as a team going forward. We need him regularly and, hopefully, we will have that now

He’s fit and he’s been training. He trained for a period with the small sessions, socially distanced type training, but he’s been training with us as a group for a while now. He’s fit as anyone else in the team and he’s naturally fit anyway. Was it a difficult situation? Yes, because I was very sympathetic as I think the reaction was everywhere. But I have to deal with it at close quarters, with N’Golo and his feelings. It was very genuine. He wanted to be clear with how it was going to work around the training ground. As I say, that’s been sorted out in the short term. He’s training and he’s happy.

I think we haven’t done any business in the last two windows. I’m pleased with the business we’ve done. It feels good at the moment. But of course, we’ll judge that more next season. We’ll all be judged on that next season. When it comes to the squad it’s certainly something that we’re going to broach once we get beyond these games and finish this season. It’s what the balance of the squad looks like for next season, whether we can make improvements to the team

If we bring in we always want to it to be improving our squad. We will have to look at it at that point, in 10 games time, how the squad will look for next season. I want us to keep improving; I want us to keep striving; I want us to try and close the gap, which has been a pretty big gap to Liverpool and Manchester City. I’ve always said it’s what we do on the training daily. That’s my first job and then the players. Then can we look to improve in terms of how we build the squad? That will come after the season

2020 06 19b Retrieve

[Lampard explains how Chelsea won race for Werner] I don’t know, that’s probably a better question to ask Timo himself. We worked as hard as we could. I had good conversations with him personally, where I think he hopefully understands what I want to do here with the club, how we work, how we play. It seemed that it came across as a really exciting prospect for him, because he obviously had some very, very good options. We’re happy with that, it was very joined up from our end as to how we went about it, and we’re just pleased that Timo has decided to come to us

2020 06 19c Retrieve

[Lampard explains how Chelsea won race for £47.5m Werner] I think he’s clearly a player that we liked. I’ve certainly followed him for a long time myself, individually, just as a talented player, even before I had this job. But as a club, clearly we went for him, and he certainly will strengthen us in my opinion. He’s got huge talent, had a fantastic season this year but before that as well. Where we probably couldn’t do as much business in the last couple of windows for whatever reasons, it’s given us a chance to see some youth have more time in the team. But we were very clear about the fact we wanted to improve and Timo Werner is always a signing that will improve us. I’m certainly very excited to have him playing for Chelsea and we look forward to having him

We worked as hard as we could. I had good conversations with him personally, where I think he hopefully understands what I want to do here with the club, how we work, how we play. It seemed that it came across as a really exciting prospect for him, because he obviously had some very, very good options. We’re happy with that, it was very joined up from our end as to how we went about it, and we’re just pleased that Timo has decided to come to us. I did speak to him [after confirmation he was joining Chelsea] and he was excited, which is great and I am certainly excited to have him here. We will have to hold our breath slightly because we have business at hand and so does he, finishing their league. He is the type of player we are looking at to come here and have a big impact. We will have to give him a bit of time, the Premier League is a different animal to other leagues in world football. But the quality that Timo has, the work ethic and personality, humility, really shone through for me when I was speaking to him. I am very happy to have him.

Yes, I have spoken to Tammy before on the idea of competition and I don’t feel the need to have to address every player after one comes in at a club like Chelsea because that’s what it is about. It has been about that in its most successful years in recent years in the Roman Abramovich era mainly. Tammy has had a really good season for us and he has to sustain and improve on that because at Chelsea we have demands. I am happy to have options and we have options in forward areas and we must have competition for places. I am pleased with the idea of that

2020 06 20 Retrieve

[Werner and Ziyech statement signings show Abramovich’s commitment to Chelsea and winning trophies] I haven’t spoken to him [Abramovich] recently. I speak to Marina a lot and with Petr. We are very joined up and we talk a lot and communication is key in that. When you say that I know the owner very well, in the workplace, to a degree, I do. But I also understand what he wants for this club. I played under it, I felt it as a player when he first came here so I get that with my conversations with Marina that’s always relayed. I want the same [as him]. In terms of his commitment, I think he has shown his commitment regularly to our football club. We have done some business now that will hopefully improve us for next season and we want to keep moving forward. One thing I really realised coming into this job, I was here a long time as a player, but as manager people will consistently ask you about your relationship with the board and the owner et cetera. I hope that this shows how we’ve worked together, all of us, with how we work, with recruitment, scouting and all playing our roles, in trying to bring the right players and being joined up. So I think we have to be very positive. This is Chelsea Football Club and we want to close the gap and signings like Timo and Ziyech both are nice statements. There are other areas we might want to improve as we go along. But there has to be players available in the market that we can get, and we feel confident and comfortable that we can get them at the right price and to fill the right holes and improve us. At the moment we’re positive with that but now the games have started it’s really important for myself, that the players and I focus on trying to finish the season well and then hopefully we can have the excitement of some new players that we know now are coming in to help us next year

Yeah, it probably does, and I get that. There’s pressure in the Chelsea job whatever. There’s expectations to whatever degree; we’re a well-supported club, well-followed club and scrutiny is big as we know. That’s why we love the Premier League and why we’re trying to do our best. So I don’t mind the idea, I get it. We’re trying to improve here. I’m under no illusions. I want us to improve first and foremost. So I don’t mind that pressure. I will have more pressure on myself. I know this year from within some of the obstacles or the things that we’re sometimes working against or with trying to do as well as we can. Of course, bringing in players that we feel are improvements, you have to go and then show that. So that will be up to the individuals themselves, and it will be my job as well. So if the pressure ramps up that will be fair enough. We do know that there is a big gap going upwards when you look at the performance of Liverpool and City in the last couple of years.

So we need to really work to try and close that gap and we have to be ready to give the players that come in, the two we’re talking about, time for adaptation to the league. We hope it’s not that much, we really believe in their qualities, but we want to be working towards closing that gap above us.

It is going to be tough and it is hard to make predictions on how many points. You want every point that’s on the table and that would get us to the position we want to be in but there’s a lot of tough games in that run-in. Any run-in would be tough in the Premier League so it is just a battle and we will have to take the games as they come, remain focused on ourselves and not try and look around too much because if we can focus on ourselves and get the right results, then it can look after ourselves. It is going to be a tough battle because you have got teams behind us and around us that are pushing for the same reasons that we are pushing. They have a lot of quality. We are aware of that but we will try and do our best. In terms of next season, yes, a club like Chelsea and how we are, we want to be in the Champions League. The players will always want to be in the Champions League so it is something we want to try and do. If not, we have to be realistic because of the competition. Then next season, we will try to improve as well as we can in whatever competitions we are in.

2020 06 21 Retrieve

[Lampard had assured his players ahead of kick-off that they will still have a role to play even if they are not always named in the starting line-up] Certainly nobody should get their head down at not starting. We’re going to have to make subs and we’re going to need impact off the bench

I know Christian was very hungry. He has trained well. The ability that he has got to arrive in the box is a big thing that I have spoken to him about all season. It is the difference between being a very good player off-the-side as an attacking player or the players at the real top level of the game that arrive and score in the six-yard box and who hit big numbers yearly. I really think Christian can do that, so I was pleased with the impact he made when he came on. He will start games for us, of course. I think he is going to be a big player for us, not just in this run-in, but going forward.

2020 06 21b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard hailed Christian Pulisic as a top-class player after Chelsea’s win over Aston Villa] He was hungry, I know that and I felt for him. He has trained well. The ability to arrive in the box is a big thing. It is a difference between being a very good player on the flank and a top-class player. With Christian and Ross [Barkley] they both have trained well, I have selection problems, good ones. I had them on my mind to come on early in the second half

I am delighted for Ruben to be back in the fold. He got in the team on his own merit with working well. In training, he has looked good and strong. We need to give him time to adapt. I thought it was a game for his physicality. There is more to come

[Lampard added on Chelsea needing to add a cutting edge to their game in the final third] am really pleased with the performance. Villa had the opportunity to do it one time more. It was new for us. We moved the ball well, dominated but we need to be more clinical. I can give leeway on that because it has been a long time out

2020 06 21c Retrieve

[Why Werner needs Willian and Pedro to stay at Chelsea] We are hoping they sign [short-term] extensions. Of course, have to just get our heads down, work hard and try to finish the season as best as we can. But they are clearly two important players for us and it would be very unfortunate if we don’t have them available for the end of the season

Pedro’s outstanding in terms of his work ethic and the players look up to him for what he has done in the game. Parts of the season have been difficult for him. He was in the team at the start of the season but got injured and was out of the team for a while. But what he has shown, particularly of late, is a real desire in training. He looks sharp, is always giving advice and lifts everybody with his body language. He is an infectious character and he can be one of our most important players until the end of the season

We all know about Willian’s ability on the ball. But his off-the-ball work is an outstanding example for Callum Hudson-Odoi, Christian Pulisic and other young players who think the only part of the game is going by people, crossing or shooting. He certainly has that classic Brazilian flair in terms of his touch and his quick feet but the selfless side of the game is the ideal starting point for me when it comes to evaluating players and he does the hard graft brilliantly and with absolute humility. He’s been a joy to work with and is one of the experienced players who is helping the young boys.

2020 06 23 Retrieve

[Willian agrees deal to remain at Chelsea until end of the domestic season] We want them to extend their stay and make sure they can see out the season. I see both sides. I see the individual player because I was one, and I respect that they have both been great servants to the club. I’ve had nothing but open conversations with them. We’re just trying to make that extension happen. The players have to be happy. We have to be happy. Hopefully we can get there before the 23rd of June, next week, because that’s the day we have to get it done by. Anyone around us knows that. So we’ll keep talking and hopefully they stay on

2020 06 24 Retrieve

[Lampard provides update on Chelsea interest in top player Havertz] He’s obviously a top player, but to carry on from my answer before I’m certainly not going to comment on other players at other teams. And it cannot be our focus. So, nothing to say. [But] No. No bids have gone in

2020 06 24b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says that he always felt confident that Chelsea would be able to keep hold of Willian and Pedro for the rest of the season] We are still talking with the players, and Willian in particular, we are talking with him. It was hard for me to comment too much because it was announced yesterday. But I was always felt confident that they would remain, they’ve been fantastic professionals for the club, and servants in all senses. And when you have that level of professionalism within you, I think it’s a sign that they wanted to stay and see out the season at least. So we’ll carry on talking and see. But I think everybody’s focus now is on these next games, the individuals themselves and us as a club

I’m pleased, negotiations were relatively easy, because both sides wanted the same thing. The two players wanted to make sure they could see the season out with us. At this point we need them in the squad, they are both important players for us, so I’m happy.

2020 06 24c Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says that he supports Raheem Sterling’s fight for equality in football, but doesn’t necessarily agree with the fact that his own rise in management was used in an individual comparison] I think there is certainly an argument. I think we’re moving forwards and I think we can move forward more quickly, where [black] players are getting equal opportunities if they move into management. Not just players, but also young coaches who come into the game. The FA do a lot of good work, I’ve just finished my pro licence, it was very diverse, it was very open. That needs to be encouraged, if there’s anything we can do to ensure everyone gets an equal opportunity in the paths towards management, then it needs to be done. The numbers suggest that needs to be done. But with Raheem, the individual comparison, when you don’t have the detail of each person’s pathway, I felt it wasn’t quite right. Again, I’ll level that out slightly, because I want to say that Raheem Sterling as a player, and as a person and what he’s stood up for over the last two years, I think has been fantastic

2020 06 24d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard is comfortable playing [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) in an advanced midfield role because he believes the Frenchman has the attributes to play anywhere on the field] I think we all know N’Golo’s attributes, and he hasn’t really played as the deep-lying midfielder, he’s generally played as one of two, or in recent times one of the more slightly offensive players ahead of one deep-lying midfield player

I think he has the attributes to do all roles, that’s one of the beauties of the way he plays and, of course, what he gives by winning the ball back, being so quick in the tackle, so quick into the press, covering lots of ground – and also how good he is on the ball, I think people can underestimate how good N’Golo is on the ball, how quickly he can move with it and pass the ball.

So I’ve got no problem in playing him in different positions, it’s something we’ve worked on with him a little bit, and it gives me good options to have different types of attributes in that deeper position at times

2020 06 24e Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has hailed incredible Willian, detailing how the normally-reserved winger has emerged as a vital leader for the Blues this season] He’s been incredible in terms of that the younger players look up to him. He’s played every level, and at a high level himself throughout. He has a great character about him and it’s good, it’s important when you have a lot of young players that they have people to look up to from within. He’s not a shouter and a screamer, but he certainly works by example in how he is daily, so yes, I’m very thankful for having him in the squad this year

2020 06 25 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard also admitted some amusement at the thought of Liverpool fans cheering for the Blues against City] That is an unusual combination! I think Liverpool won the league months ago, but not taking anything away from them if they were to win it tonight. They have been outstanding. They should celebrate for their brilliant performances. That’s for them to celebrate whenever and we will just focus on our performance tonight. You want to deliver against Man City. Tonight won’t be pivotal [in the top-four race] but we want a result. We have one of the best teams in the country or the world coming to the Bridge - it’s going to be a tough match

2020 06 25b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has suggested that Willian may yet be talked into prolonging his association with Chelsea] Yes, we are still talking with the players and Willian in particular we are talking with him. I always felt confident that they would remain. They have been fantastic professionals for the club and servants in all senses and when you have that level of professionalism within you it was a sign that they wanted to stay and see out this season at least. So we will carry on talking and see but I think everybody’s focus now is on these next games, the individuals themselves and us as a club. I’m pleased negotiations were relatively easy because both sides wanted the same thing. The two players wanted to make sure they could see the season out with us. At this point we need them in the squad they are both important players for us so I’m happy

2020 06 25c Retrieve

[Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola are different class, according to Frank Lampard] It was tough. When you come up against a team of Manchester City’s quality – in individuals, in the way they’re coached – for me, they’re the best, in terms of the way they play football, so great to watch. Pep and Jurgen Klopp are different class, hence why Liverpool are winning the league tonight! We had to work every bit that we could to try and get a result. We had to work defensively so, so hard and we did it, and we created the better chances on the night

[Benjamin Mendy was shown up by Pulisic for the first goal, before Fernandinho saw red to give Willian the opportunity to win the game after handballing on the line] You always try and limit your errors, which there have been issues with at times, and you always try and capitalise [on your opponents’] but when you’ve got pace and you’ve got players like Christian who can get away from people and drive with the ball, you can do that. We’ve had the ball more than any team I think, regularly this season in games, the bigger percentage. But today against Manchester City when they play a false nine and they’ve got bodies in midfield, it’s really tough so we had to tweak a little bit at half-time, suffer in the first 20 minutes of the second half, but I think we deserved the win on chances

Olly [Olivier Giroud] has been great for us but when you think about attributes and I knew we were suffering and we needed an outlet. Maybe to press a bit higher up the pitch, it’s a lot of work we’re asking for from the players but at any moment you need your subs and you need people to come on fresh and bring energy to the team and I thought Tammy did that

2020 06 25d Retrieve

[Lampard will have plenty of attacking options next season and he has made it clear to Abraham – and the rest of the squad – that no player can afford to take their starting spot for granted] I have spoken to Tammy before about competition. I don’t have to address every player if another one comes in. It’s how it has been in the (Roman) Abramovich era. Tammy has been fantastic this season but he has to sustain his form and improve because at Chelsea we have demands

2020 06 26 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard considers Christian Pulisic to have so much talent] Christian came in last summer. Lot of talk about it. He didn’t really get a break when he got in the team. He was playing really well and gets a really tough injury. I wanted to protect him a bit against Villa, see that he could make an impact. He did that. I always planned to start him against Man City because I know what he can bring in these sort of games and he brought it. He did really well. He needs to keep working, he’s a young player but he’s got so much talent and he can get better and better

2020 06 26b Retrieve

[Ambition has been shown in the transfer market when tying up deals for Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner, with Lampard hoping to push the Blues back into title contention during his tenure] There is a clear gap and it won’t happen overnight with one or two signings. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done. Liverpool and City have been works in progress for a few years now and they are getting a lot of success, a bit of success now. I’m not getting carried away. We can get better. We can be better on the ball. We can have more possession

2020 06 26c Retrieve

[Chelsea had their struggles against City but Lampard and his coaching staff twice made excellent use of the water breaks to change the flow of the game] We suffered for 20 minutes at the start of the game and we suffered for 20 minutes in the second half. Of course, they are going to have a lot possession and sometimes they play without an out-and-out striker with a lot of men in midfield, so getting to grips with that was tough for us. Going into the game, we had a plan in terms of what we wanted to do off the ball and while we had some issues at times, the players did brilliantly in terms of their discipline and in maintaining it for the whole game. We were dangerous and we created the better chances, so I am delighted for the boys

[Lampard knows just how much the bar has been raised by City and Liverpool over the past few seasons] There is a clear gap and it won’t close overnight with one or two signings. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done. Liverpool and City have been works in progress for a few years now and they are getting a lot of success. So, I’m not getting carried away. We can get better. We can be better on the ball. We can have more possession. It’s one of the only games in which we didn’t have the lion’s share of possession but we have to accept that for now and be happy with the result

2020 06 27 Retrieve

[Pulisic has the talent to score goals like Salah, Mane or Sterling] I think he can be a really big player. Because he broke through so young in Germany and he moves to us, people’s expectations rise, but we have to take his age into consideration

There’s no doubt in his quality and you can see that. He is very keen to work and improve. He is particularly hungry at the minute because of his injury. And if he wants to learn, and he does, on the training pitch and how he sees the game, he needs to look at the players he sees around him who have made that sort of jump like the Raheem Sterlings, Sadio Manes and Mo Salahs who are now producing numbers [of goals] from wide areas

It is important that he understands the work he needs to do to do that because he definitely has the talent to do it. He needs to try and get to that level and I am delighted to have him at the minute. He works hard every day and he has to set his sights as high as he can

Yes, I think it is important. You have to have that idea but the reality is the competition you go up against with the teams that are still in this FA Cup means it is going to be tough. We are in a year of slight transition

Of course, our focus is always the league but when it comes to Chelsea, when you get to a quarter-final, you want to try and get to Wembley and you want to try and go and win it. It is important to focus on that. We are building, we are working and it won’t be easy to try and win this trophy. But with the squad we have and the positive feeling we have at the minute in the group, we have to go in with the right attention

2020 06 28 Retrieve

[Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is hopeful Christian felt a tightness in his calf in the second drinks break, hopefully nothing that keeps him out] The result was satisfying and getting to the semis was satisfying. We weren’t our usual selves today. We were below what we usually produce. But I am happy with the result. We won the game and must learn from some of the mistakes in our game. I don’t want to sound too down after this. You have to show the grit to get a win when you don’t play well. We go on to the next one. We can park the Cup and focus on getting the league wins to be in the Champions League

It is a learning experience. I could have taken more off, or other players off. I am not pulling those out on their own. They will be top players for this club and have top careers. But if I have to do something in games I will do it. It was one of those games where I had to do something. They will take it on the chin. We were gifting Leicester space and ease to win the ball back. We are fortunate they didn’t take those chances. All thee subs, in their own way, livened up the performance

2020 06 28b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has praised Ross Barkley after he came off the bench to fire Chelsea into the FA Cup semi-finals, saying the midfielder is reaping the benefits of hard work on the training ground] I played with Ross and I know he’s a great lad. He wants to be the best player he can be and has a great attitude in that sense. I won’t touch on that one, all I’ll say is before we went into lockdown he put in some really good performances for us. His attitude has been spot on in training since the minute we’ve been back, how he trains and it shows how he looked after himself in lockdown. He was unfortunate not to start against Villa and since then has made an impact in every game he has played

A great example of when you train at a level, have that attitude and when you have the quality that Ross has. He can score goals. He can shoot with both feet. He makes the box. He defended well and showed great discipline in his game against Manchester City. He is reaping the benefits and showing it. I’ve got lots of time for Ross, he’s a big player for us and you could see that in the last three games.

2020 06 28c Retrieve

[Lampard will speak to future ‘top players’ Gilmour, Mount and James after they disappoint against Leicester in FA Cup] I could have made different changes as well. Mason has played two games in a week and gave a lot of input against Manchester City for 90 minutes. Reece James hasn’t played for a long time, since lockdown. Billy was the same. These are contributing factors around it. They are going to be top players for this club no matter what. They are going to have top careers in football. They will have really, really top careers because of the players they are. Whether you can call it a learning experience, it was just a factor of how I saw the game. They can take it on board. They are all good lads, all train well and all have a good work ethic. I’ve never had a problem with the three of them at all. I’ve got no worries; it was just the circumstances today

[Lampard showed his ruthless side to his three youngsters, but he isn’t blaming them and may take them aside in the next analysis session following the match] Yes, I possibly will [speak to them again]. I spoke to them all briefly at half-time and the end because it does happen in football. This is what it is. Sometimes it’s a tough game for different reasons. I’ll happily speak to them. I have got no problem with them; it certainly doesn’t feel an issue where I can say they didn’t give me anything. The performance was lethargic for the whole team and they were part of that. But individually, it’s very tough to stand out when a performance is like that. I’ll say that to them; it’s not a problem. If it’s a bit of a learning one, then fine but if I had a problem with work ethic or attitude I’d say it. But I don’t have that with them. It will be a brief conversation and we will move on. They are going to be big players for us

2020 06 28d Retrieve

[Chelsea boss Frank Lampard addressed the club’s reported interest in Havertz last week] He’s obviously a top player, but to carry on from my answer before I’m certainly not going to comment on other players at other teams

2020 06 28e Retrieve

[Frank Lampard challenges Christian Pulisic to reach Raheem Sterling and Mo Salah level] I think he can be a really big player, because he broke through at such a young age in Germany and he made a big move, obviously expectations rise but you have to keep the age in consideration. There is no doubt about his quality, we can see that and he is very keen to improve. He’s particularly hungry at the minute because he missed some time with an injury. If he looks at players around him that have made that sort of a jump, he has the ability like Raheem Sterling to produce numbers from wide areas, like [Mo] Salah and [Sadio] Mane. He understands the work that needs to be done to do that. He definitely has the talent, he needs to get to that level. I’m delighted to have him at the minute, he works hard everyday, he has to set his sights as high as he possibly can

[Winning the first trophy] was very important to us at the time because we were a team of not many winners, we didn’t have too many titles between us, we were a relatively young team. Jose brought that mentality to us and winning the first one obviously helps you to push on. In our team I feel we have a mixture of players who have been here and won a lot and some younger players who haven’t done that, in my managerial career I haven’t. I recognise the importance of that, that’s what we are here for, to win things at a club like Chelsea. It doesn’t fall short on me, the FA Cup is something we are going to give everything to [try and win]. We have a difficult game against Leicester of course, we know the quality they have but we have to focus on trying to go as far as we can, it would be a big boost if we got further.

2020 06 29 Retrieve

[Ross Barkley’s second-half goal was enough to send Chelsea into the FA Cup semi-finals, beating Leicester 1-0 at the King Power Stadium] I played with Ross and he is a great lad. His attitude has been spot on in training since the minute we’ve been back. He was unfortunate not to start against Villa and since then he has made an impact in every game he has played. He is reaping the benefits. I’ve got a lot of time for Ross and he is a big player for us

I don’t think we’ve played that badly this season for 45 minutes. We’ve played better and lost games. I could have made more or different subs. We needed to drag ourselves out of a lethargic performance and we did. We were fortunate to be 0-0 at half-time and we must learn from little mistakes from the game. I don’t want to sound too down because it’s important to show you’ve got the grit to get a 1-0 win when you don’t play well. It looks like I’m criticising but it’s positive because it’s not the norm for us

2020 06 29b Retrieve

[Chelsea boss demands more from his side despite booking FA Cup semi-final spot] I don’t think we’ve played that badly this season for 45 minutes. We’ve played better and lost games. I could have made more or different subs. We needed to drag ourselves out of a lethargic performance and we did. We were fortunate to be 0-0 at half-time and we must learn from little mistakes from the game. I don’t want to sound too down because it’s important to show you’ve got the grit to get a 1-0 win when you don’t play well. It looks like I’m criticising but it’s positive because it’s not the norm for us

[Barkley a big player for Chelsea] I played with Ross and he is a great lad. His attitude has been spot on in training since the minute we’ve been back. He was unfortunate not to start against Villa and since then he has made an impact in every game he has played. He is reaping the benefits. I’ve got a lot of time for Ross and he is a big player for us

2020 06 30 Retrieve

[Given Pulisic’s last appearance pre-lockdown came on New Year’s Day due to a torn adductor muscle, the speed in which he has rediscovered his best form is hugely encouraging for Lampard] I think he can be a really big player. Because he broke through so young in Germany and he moves to us, people’s expectations rise, but we have to take his age into consideration. There’s no doubt in his quality and you can see that. He is very keen to work and improve. He is particularly hungry at the minute because of his injury. And if he wants to learn, he needs to look at the players he sees around him who have made that sort of jump like Raheem Sterling, Sadio Mane and Mo Salah, who are now producing numbers [of goals] from wide areas. It is important that he understands the work he needs to do to do that, because he definitely has the talent to do it. He needs to try and get to that level and I am delighted to have him at the minute.

2020 06 30b Retrieve

[Lampard denies interest in Angel Gomes after Man Utd exit & distances Chelsea from Declan Rice raid] I can elaborate to the point that it’s never been mentioned at my end, so that’s it. Declan Rice is a good player you’re right, and I’ve known him for a long time, he was in the Chelsea academy. But there’s no talk, I keep saying, about every player we’ll be asked about. Until these games and this season is finished, there’s nothing to say

I am in the process of arranging that plan now. You are right, they do become our players. They are also in different positions in the fact that Hakim hasn’t played for a long time because of the Dutch league situation and Timo finished at the weekend. We will formulate a plan for them that will look slightly different individually. We will decide in the meantime at Cobham in the training ground whether that means mixing with the squad or whether that means some physical work in the shorter term for themselves

2020 06 30c Retrieve

[Angel Gomes: Frank Lampard denies Chelsea have offered contract to Man Utd midfielder] I can elaborate to the point that it’s never been mentioned on my end. That’s it. Declan Rice is a good player. I’ve known him for a long time, he was in Chelsea’s academy but there’s no talk. I’ll keep saying it about every player that we’ll be asked about until this season is finished - there’s nothing to say

Christian (Pulisic) felt a bit of tightness in his calf just as he came off against Leicester, so we’re managing him but I haven’t got an answer yet. It feels a bit better than it did at the end of the game so we’ll see by tomorrow. Andreas Christensen, likewise, is in the squad but we’ll have to see but with another 24 hours because of the tight turnaround

[Pedro will join Roma on a two-year deal at the campaign but the long-term future of Willian is yet to be decided] We’ve still got ongoing conversations with him. I’ve got no clarity on that yet but we will continue to talk. He knows what I think of him as a player. He’s been very, very good for me this year. I played with him, I know him very well. It’s a very honest and open conversation. I understand that he has options and that is something that has to be taken seriously, particularly at this stage of his career

2020 06 30d Retrieve

[Frank Lampard has faith in Chelsea’s Mason Mount] Mason wouldn’t have been happy to come off at half-time. But it should be a case of not being happy that evening and then getting straight back to it afterwards, because he knows how much I trust in him and he works brilliantly every day. And when I say Mason, I mean Billy (Gilmour) and Reece (James) in the same breath because they show similar attitude

There was no problem with Mason because it was a one-off game, I had to make a decision and it doesn’t affect my thinking for West Ham or going forwards. Mason played 90 minutes in both the first two games after the restart, and was unfortunate not to score or have an assist. So he had two big performances in a week. And then with the Leicester game Mason didn’t have a bad performance and my choices to change were more about the players I could bring into that performance as opposed to the ones that were on the pitch

I could make a lot of changes in that game, so it was more about, ‘Can I bring some energy into the team? So I rely on Mason a lot, I did at Derby, I do at Chelsea, he brings so much to the team in his work ethic and the way he can start the press in midfield. His quality on the ball is already at a high level and it’s only going to get better

[Mount could come face to face with friend Declan Rice when Chelsea] I think it spurs you on more if you have a personal relationship with an opponent either way - whether you are best friends or you don’t even like each other. I also think the result of that is not concrete either - you will either have your best of games in that sort of circumstance but you can also become overly focused on that relationship and have a not so good game They are two very good players. But there is only one thing I will ask of Mason - and from my point of view that is obviously all I care about going into this one. He texts him tonight, he smiles at him in the tunnel or whatever it is, but if and when they go up against each other he has try to beat him in every individual battle that he possibly can. And sensing Declan Rice’s character, I am sensing they will both be like-minded on that one. We will see

2020 07 02 Retrieve

[Andriy Yarmolenko stepped off the bench to hit the winner as West Ham shrugged off VAR controversy to beat Chelsea 3-2 and give their Premier League survival hopes a huge boost] I wouldn’t say it’s the story of our season because it’s been a good season. But there have been so many of these moments. I explained it clearly to the players before the game: we had a good restart, three good results, and an opportunity today to go third. But you have to do every part of the game to get results in games like this

You can dominate possession, which we did for most of the game. But if there are moments where you switch off, if you go 1-0 up and then make two or three errors to them scoring and going 1-1 before half-time, you’re going to encourage teams on

It’s been there and I’m very aware of it, but the players in those moments have to show an extra mentality, an extra bit to do the bits that see a game through like this when you have a lot of domination

2020 07 03 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard hopeful Willian will sign new Chelsea contract and stay beyond this season] I haven’t given up hope on it. The club are still in discussions with him. We want him to stay at the club, but I also appreciate this contract for him is a big deal because of his age and where he’s at. I’ve been there before myself, and I respect that. The way he’s playing at the minute, he’s shown his worth to the squad. It’s something I hope we can get to, whatever way with Willian, he’s been a great servant to the club, if we can get it I’ll be happy, but if not I’ll certainly wish him well because I’ve got a lot of time for him. It’s ongoing, in short.

[Asked if the club would target taller players in the next transfer window] We looked at set-piece stats from last season when we came into the club. Last season, we were bottom of the league in defending set plays, in terms of other teams getting big chances against us. We were second bottom in attack. We looked at that, but that’s not just a reference to last season because we haven’t improved much this year. If you look at personnel, I really don’t like talking about my days of playing, but we didn’t really work on set-pieces at all. Certain managers more than others. There were probably a few reasons why; John Terry, Gary Cahill, Didier Drogba, Michael Ballack and Branislav Ivanovic. You stick it into an area and they defend it or score goals. I think similar with Liverpool, I remember a lot of talk about them on set pieces two seasons ago. They were zonal, conceded a lot. They sign Virgil van Dijk and he heads everything that comes into the box out.

So there’s a huge relation to personnel, and if you don’t have a big size across the team, I think trying to compete and make it difficult for other teams to score is the main thing. I’m not trying to make excuses as we haven’t done that well enough on the pitch. That has to improve. When you look at who you might bring in, with the balance of the squad, in the modern day it’s certainly something to take into account when you’re looking at recruitment.

2020 07 03b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard: No need to address Marcos Alonso mistake after Gary Neville and Ashley Cole criticism] I haven’t spoken to him about it. I think it’s a dangerous game to comment on every pundit because you would probably have to have conversations with all of your players every week. That’s the nature of the beast and what we do. Yes, if I felt a player needed help or support in those situations, I would do, but I think we as players and myself are the biggest self-critics. We analyse games and go over them, talk with players individually or collectively. That’s my main focus, not so much what comes from outside

It’s much easier to comment from afar, we do try to play football, we try and be progressive but we don’t do that at the idea of wanting to concede goals.

Recovery runs are a huge part of football and the players must do them whether it’s the first or 90th minute. I don’t think it’s quite fair to just look at Marcos - in that isolated incident yes he can recover and we can recover better as a team, but that has to be something fundamental to the team

You have to run backwards as much as you run fast forwards, and you have to have the desire to make difficult runs to help the team. I can’t complain about the team with that this year

When you isolate one goal, that is so crucial because it wins the points, then fair enough, but I know with my players that generally we have a desire to press off the ball and when it goes beyond us, to recover and get there. It was a game where we slipped up, not just with that mistake but other mistakes, and we lost the game for it

2020 07 03c Retrieve

[Emerson Palmieri: Inter Milan open transfer talks with Chelsea for Italy defender] I’m not aware of the talks. What I am doing is focusing on the team and the squad day-to-day. I don’t have any real conversations about the transfer window, whether it’s who we might bring in or who might leave the club. Those are questions we do have to answer at the end of the season when the window opens. I don’t want to be swayed by rumour and gossip, and I’m not involved in it, so we’ll keep working

They haven’t arrived. The whole country is waiting on quarantine news. We’re waiting to make sure the players can travel and be able to move around and work as we’ll need them to. Timo has only just finished recently so he’s having a well-deserved break and will come later in July, Ziyech will come earlier but we have to wait on the quarantine news.

2020 07 04 Retrieve

[N’Golo Kante injured in Chelsea’s win over Watford] N’golo has got a small hamstring (injury) which we’ll have to scan tomorrow (Sunday) and see how bad it is. We hope it’s small, that’s what I’ve been told so far. After the scan we’ll know but I’m guessing it’ll be a problem for Palace on Tuesday

2020 07 04b Retrieve

[Kai Havertz: Playmaker linked with Chelsea ‘can leave Leverkusen this summer’] He’s a top player but we’re certainly not going to comment on players at other teams. It cannot be our focus. No bids have gone in

2020 07 05 Retrieve

[Chelsea brushed off their midweek setback to return to winning ways with a routine 3-0 victory over Watford at Stamford Bridge] We played some nice stuff and it can be difficult to play against the low block. They came to defend so the way we broke it down was good. We could’ve been a bit more incisive with our passing in the second half but I’m delighted with the clean sheet. It was a comfortable evening for us.

Pre-West Ham, we could’ve gone third but we let ourselves down. We slipped to fifth before today, and responded. We need to get used to that sort of pressure, as it’s going to be tough all the way through

2020 07 06 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says it was a comfortable evening in the end for Chelsea as they won 3-0 at home to Watford] Pre-West Ham, we could have gone third and we let ourselves down. Today, there was a bit of pressure to get back to fourth and we produced - so get used to that pressure, whatever way it looks, because it’s going to be tough all the way through. We cannot get too caught up with what everyone else does at the moment

2020 07 06b Retrieve

[N’Golo Kante out of Chelsea’s Premier League game at Crystal Palace with hamstring injury] Kante won’t be in the squad - low-level hamstring injury. We’re hoping for a week or so [recovery time]. I would expect we would be very lucky to have him for Sheffield United

[Lampard quiet on Jorginho return] I don’t want to go into personal details, or positional and tactical details of why I pick the team. I just have to pick the team as I see best. They’re just my choices. He’s been very professional about it. He wants to play, as every player does. One of the hardest parts of the job is telling a player they’re not playing, particularly when they train well - and Jorginho always trains well. It’s important players, during the course of a long season, are there to support players when they’re out - and he’s done that

[Pulisic more direct than Hazard] Having played with Eden and seen him come to the club at a relatively young age - similar to Christian - we saw the development of him. He had a special talent straight away, of being able to receive a ball, have great balance and go past players so well. He would draw a lot of players towards him to open up space for others - he was pretty unselfish in how he would make assists.

Christian is possibly more direct, in terms of how he goes past players and runs off the ball - which I like. Eden would come and get the ball and take it past players a lot. With Christian, he has real ability to break a line and run forward, which is a really great trait in the modern game.

In terms of the comparison, and why I stayed away from it a bit; Eden has been here and done it, to an incredible level. Christian has it in his hands to go and make a real impact over a period of time. The thing I’m so happy with now is that when we’re finding it hard to break teams down, he’s taking responsibility to change that by using his ability to turn quickly and go past people. It’s been great to see and there’s a lot of development still to come with Christian. I’m very happy with him

2020 07 07 Retrieve

[Tammy Abraham Chelsea contract negotiations not affecting form] I think Tammy’s contract, we are not at a critical level with it. I will leave it with him and the club to discuss that side of it. I don’t think it is something that is clearly in his mind now, at least it shouldn’t be. What needs to be in his mind now is these games we have coming up and how much he can give us on the pitch, whether coming on as a sub or starting the game

He has had a really good season, he hasn’t scored as much in the second half of the season. But as a young player it is always clear when you have these periods there is only one way out of it and that is work and repetition in training. I think that is where Tammy is at. I think the contract will hopefully look after itself between him and the club and he just needs to focus on giving us that Tammy that we had earlier in the season. He was giving defenders so much of a problem in games and scoring regularly and it all came from how he was training and working in the week. That is just what he has to sustain all the time

2020 07 08 Retrieve

[Christian Pulisic’s end product delights Chelsea boss Frank Lampard] He’s got great talent. He came here in difficult conditions at the start of the season in terms of not having a break but he’s moved his game on to another level - not just in terms of how he’s going by people but he’s got real end product. I didn’t put any limits on him so he’s not surprised me. I knew the talent he had and I wanted to help him when he first got here because of the physical nature of the league. I had to manage him and then unfortunately he had quite a bad injury. But the hunger that he has, the quality that he’s showing, and the end product has been the most pleasing aspect. Since the restart, he’s been fantastic. You look around at the top attacking talent in the world, they score goals regularly that win games and at the moment he’s doing that, so I’m delighted with him

2020 07 08b Retrieve

[Lampard gets his substitutions Right] Considering the quality in our midfield during the first half, today wasn’t our greatest day. We weren’t as slick with the ball as we have been recently, and gave them the opportunity to press us and turn over possession. I thought Ruben could use his strength to drive with the ball and Tammy could stretch their defence with his running so I’m very pleased he got his goal. They’re a big three points because of the position we’re in. It’s tight around us and it’s nice mentally to be third for maybe a short period. The game could’ve been more comfortable for us tonight but then we could also have lost those three points at the end there. It might be nice to dwell on the three points, but my job is to look into how we can get better and I feel we still can

It was a bad injury, with the way he went down, but we had to finish the action. There’s no way we were going to kick the ball out in that situation but you obviously feel sorry for him on an individual note. I know for head injuries, the game would stop but not in those situations

2020 07 08c Retrieve

[Premier League drinks break - is it fair?]]</b> I think he (Chris Wilder) does have a point. I think they were brought in with the right intention. So as a coach, you try and use it if you can, because any opportunity to speak to the players during the game can be pretty precious. So I don’t think it’s an uneven playing field in that sense - we all have the same periods to speak to our players. I think it’s been brought in place for this short part of the season and maybe they’ll see it through to the end of the season. But I can’t see it going any further than that, I don’t think anyone would want that

2020 07 10 Retrieve

[Billy Gilmour: Chelsea midfielder expected to miss up to four months following knee operation] Billy had an operation on his knee [Friday] morning, we estimate he will be out for between three and four months unfortunately. I am obviously very disappointed as we all are here and Billy is himself. I spoke with him yesterday at length. [We are] giving him support and being there for him. He is a tough boy and it will hit him hard, particularly as a younger player who has just made a breakthrough. He was doing so well but this is part of football, I tried to explain that to him. He should be very pleased with what he has done, the impact he has had this season. His attitude will get him back as quick as he can, his character is fantastic, particularly with his age. The personality he has shown to get himself into the first team, I’m very sure he will show the same character in doing everything right with his rehab. He has a close knit family who will be there for him. The small bonus is that hopefully it will cover a period that is off season.

[Jorginho has nothing to prove] I don’t think there’s a point to prove, there is no point to prove. He proves it in training and when he plays for me. I hope there isn’t a point to prove as such, I just want to see the usual Jorginho.

[When asked whether Jorginho would be a Chelsea player next season] I keep getting asked about next season, but it’s irrelevant to me; these final few games will define how we sit and look at this season and look forward to next

2020 07 10b Retrieve

[Frank Lampard happy with Jorginho and says he is an important member of his squad] I have selection issues in midfield. Good issues because I have [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html), Billy Gilmour, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic. And then in slightly more advanced areas I have Mason Mount, Ross Barkley and I have Ruben Loftus-Cheek now. There are always players who are maybe unhappy or have moments out of the team and that’s Jorginho at the moment. If a player is missing for one game or a few games, it doesn’t mean in any way that they are out of my thoughts going forward. There have been times when he has been pivotal for me this year certainly on and off the pitch. That doesn’t change and I am very happy with him

[Lampard: Abraham is a serious player] This has been a breakthrough season for him in effect as a Premier League striker at the top of the goalscoring charts, which he was for big parts of the season. He’s seen the really nice patch when the goals are flying in, and the tougher times and what it takes to be consistent at this level. That has been a great experience for him and he has done brilliantly well, let’s be really straight about that. Now it’s [taking it to] stage two at this level and that is people knowing about you, and what you do. He has to focus on himself, on training and how he can get better and improve. We know he can improve, but that’s for him because he is a serious player.

[Lampard enjoying watching Pulisic turn on the style] I continue to watch him and enjoy it. There was a lot of talk about Christian at the beginning of the season, and he came to us having not really had a break, and it was difficult for him, the physicality of the league. But he works so hard. I have to say with Christian he works so hard with our strength and conditioning coach Adam Burrows and spends extra hours in the gym. You see his physicality, and speed and balance now, and how he can hold people off when he moves with the ball and that’s down to his choice to work so hard in the gym and do those extra bits.

2020 07 11 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard furious as Chris Wilder works wonders to stun Chelsea] They were better than us, they were stronger than us physically and with the ball, so you lose the game. You feel and hear every noise [on the touchline] and all I could hear was Sheffield United voices. They are a good team and if you come here and perform below par this is what will happen. We matched them shape wise but were too slow and weren’t getting our wingers into the game. We tried to get control, which we did but weren’t threatening. At 2-0 down you make it difficult for yourselves. Disappointing. Mistakes. You analyse all season and review and move forward. We need to put that to bed quickly and fight for the top four. I learned a lot and I won’t forget that

I am not concerned about top four today. Today I am concerned with how we performed. All I do is sit and watch the games and consider what we want to do. We will see where we are when we approach Norwich. But we can’t approach Norwich or Manchester United or Wolves like we did today

2020 07 11b Retrieve

[David McGoldrick broke his Premier League duck with two goals as Sheffield United dented Champions League-chasing Chelsea with a 3-0 victory at Bramall Lane] They were better than us, physically, in the mind and with the ball. They were stronger than us. You feel and hear every noise and all I could hear was Sheffield United voices. They are a good team. If you come here and perform below par this is what will happen. You analyse all season and review and move forward. We need to put that to bed quickly and fight for the top four. I learned a lot and I won’t forget that. I am not concerned about top four today, today I am concerned with how we performed

2020 07 13 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard insists Chelsea were not pinning Champions League hopes on Man City ban] I was pretty neutral on it really. I don’t know much about the case. I just listened to the result - as everyone else did - this morning. I don’t see beyond the games. We’ve got a few games now and we want to win them, then see if it gets us Champions League football. I was never pinning my hopes on an extra team getting in - we worry about ourselves. If we win enough games now, we can get into the Champions League

We’ve brought a couple of players in, which I think shows a real positivity about where we want to go. Not being able to do business in the last two windows has meant that we haven’t been able to bring in, we haven’t been able to move players out. I think that’s as important as bringing players in sometimes - to keep freshening up the squad and keep the competitive nature. I know where I want to go with the squad, but that has to be a fluid conversation with the club. Of course economics will come into it, so we’ll cross that bridge when it comes

[Chelsea wary of ‘wounded’ Norwich] Having good home form is good for confidence and we have to carry on with that. With Norwich, we absolutely have to treat them with utmost respect. Wounded animal, whatever you want to call it … they have quality players, they play very well. In a lot of games I’ve seen them in this season, they could probably consider themselves unfortunate not to have got results. We’ll certainly be expecting a very tough game

2020 07 14 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard: Chelsea boss backs young squad for Premier League success] I think it’s part of the situation we’re in and the process we’re in here at the minute with the lot of younger players we have and players that are probably playing their first year in the Premier League, let alone playing for Champions League spots and what have you, which is a lot of pressure, is them adapting to that. They need to be helped by the players that have been there and done that and won World Cups or won Premier Leagues like some of the players have in our squad. In certain times, experience is overrated, in my opinion. It’s good to have it within the group but sometimes it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the answer and that gives you success. Sometimes it’s a bit of innocence, a bit of youthfulness and a bit of real desire without the feelings of past campaigns and successes and failures that can be something really positive within

[Chelsea face Norwich, live on Sky Sports, on Tuesday evening, before finishing the season with matches against champions Liverpool, and Wolves] There’s twists and turns every game. These three games are so important for all of us. I did expect Manchester United to be in the race. They can’t not be in the race with the quality of players they’ve had this season and the second half of the season with the incoming of Fernandes and his impact, and the way they’re playing they were always going to be in the race. Leicester are a fantastic team as well, so I think the race remains on. Wolves are there, Wolves are pushing. It is what it is, it’s who performs over these three games, it’s so tight.

In terms of defensively, there is a way that I want us to play and it’s not gung-ho, it’s not crazy. A lot of the goals are the balls that come into our box that maybe we don’t defend right at that moment and that’s something that has to improve and I feel I know the answers to it. Some of it is work and that’s something we will see and it’s part of the process we are in. I don’t like it, I hate conceding goals but we have to work harder on it. I don’t think any team in modern football are going to say ‘We’ve got that one defensive partnership’. You go back and talk about a John Terry-Ricardo Carvalho partnership, but in the modern day, I don’t think you will find too many clubs to name the two. It’s a difficult season and a demanding season, so I’m not saying I just want to pick two centre-backs because you need competition of probably four centre-backs within a squad and then you need them knocking on the door. You want to be able to say to players ‘You are not doing enough’ or the two that are playing keep deserving to play. I don’t think it’s about just a partnership. Can we be more settled if we improve? Yes, for sure. Will it be just two players who are going to be your centre backs? I don’t think that’s going to be the case.

2020 07 15 Retrieve

[Asked to assess the race to secure a Champions League spot] We take our three points, we focus on ourselves, we can sit down and watch the other teams this week and focus on our FA Cup semi-final at the weekend [against Manchester United], but there’s obviously still work to do. There’s a nervy feeling for understandable reasons, so I’m pleased. We went a bit slow for about 10 or 15 minutes in the second half. Then we began moving the ball again and there was a bit of personality in our game today, but we can improve

As we’ve seen in the last 48 hours at this stage of the season, results are critical. We didn’t concede any chances of big note for them to score a goal and we created quite a few ourselves. Maybe we could’ve been a bit better with our quality, but it was professional. I want more, but that can wait. Where we’re at as a team, and the position we’re in the table, three points is everything tonight. I live the game, so I wanted a bit more quality during the first half. I believe the group has more quality than it showed in those early stages and we needed to move the ball quicker. We have to be more mobile which we did here in our last game against Watford, but if we really want to move on longer-term it has to be better, but I don’t want to be too critical as three points at this stage isn’t easy.

[Lampard said of the match-winner] He’s always going to give you that desire for the team, and I know he had a fair few half chances but we have to use his attributes by getting the service in for him. It was a brilliant cross from Christian for his goal and he’s a big character for us, and he’s scoring important goals for us at the moment. Just before lockdown, he came in and was part of a couple of big results, and he’s due a lot of credit. He’s never given me a problem, he’s always trained brilliantly. When Tammy [Abraham] was playing well at the start of the season and staying regularly in the team, his professionalism was always good. In January, I told him I wanted him to stay and he was fantastic in how he handled that. The way he plays is important for us

2020 07 17 Retrieve

[Frank Lampard says Chelsea do not have an unfair FA Cup advantage over Manchester United] We have played Saturday, Tuesday this week, they played Monday, Thursday so we have both played two games this week as it stands. We’re in a period where we are playing very regularly and you have to work with the squad as it is but it isn’t about having an advantage or not. Sometimes it works in your favour to be playing regularly and ticking over so personally I don’t see it as an advantage.

We have Manchester United ahead of us and then City or Arsenal, so it is going to be tough. We’re in a semi-final, we know what is in front of us and at this point we are fighting on two fronts as well as the domestic front and a club like Chelsea we always want to win trophies. We have done it very well in the modern era and we have another opportunity and it is up to the players to make the best of it on Sunday but we’re up against a very good team in good form