EPL

Werner and Ziyech signings should not unsettle Chelsea, insists Lampard

By Sports Desk July 13, 2020

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard does not believe the signings of Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech should be unsettling his squad amid their battle for a top-four finish in the Premier League.

The Blues were beaten 3-0 by Sheffield United last Saturday, a result that could have damaging consequences in terms of their bid to qualify for the Champions League.

Leicester City's surprise 4-1 defeat to struggling Bournemouth on Sunday means Chelsea remain third in the table with three matches to play, although they will drop to fourth if Manchester United beat Southampton on Monday.

The humbling loss at Bramall Lane came on the same day that Ziyech, who is joining from Ajax for an initial fee of £33.4million (€40m), was pictured training at Chelsea's Cobham base for the first time.

"If you want to be a Chelsea player and be in the Chelsea team and squad and fight for the Premier League, to fight in Europe and to fight for trophies you have to focus on yourself," Lampard said ahead of Tuesday's game against relegated Norwich City.

"At the moment, going into this season we were 30-odd points off the top two last season. If you want that gap to close, you have to focus on yourself. If players come in, that should be the nature of the beast playing for Chelsea. It shouldn't be a problem for anyone.

"I feel a huge inquest is not needed [after the loss] because of where we are at. The games are coming thick and fast; we're nearly at the end of the season. I will analyse the game myself certainly but for the players, the biggest thing is that they have to be positive and look to the next one.

"I know the feeling as a player. It was a horrible game for the players and none of the players played well. When you do that at a place like Sheffield United when they are playing well, it is a very difficult place to get anything out of it. I won't dwell on it this time and I will concentrate on the games ahead and the players will, too."

Lampard admits there are defensive problems he must address following the loss to Chris Wilder's side, with Chelsea having conceded more league goals (49) than any other team in the top 10.

"It was certainly one of our worst days of the season in terms of performance and you get what you deserve on that front," Lampard said.

"I would love to have consistency in the back four, or back two or three or whatever you want to call it. That is what you strive for. Unfortunately, this season we have made mistakes and individual errors where you end up striving for it.

"That is the position we are in. The only way out of it is hard work with the individuals involved to get through this season as we’re still in a good position considering the expectations at the start of the season, then we'll look forward.

"Amongst other things, you don't want to concede that amount of goals. There are many reasons for those goals when we look through the season. Sometimes I bemoan the fact we don't score enough - that gives you the feeling of comfort in games and nervousness can create problems that lead to goals.

"We know we have made too many errors in terms of giving goals away and it is something that we have to address."

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