Thiago Silva says his early Premier League appearances have left him with headaches, but he is looking to earn a contract extension at Chelsea.

Silva joined Chelsea on a free transfer in August, having not had his contract extended at Paris Saint-Germain.

The ex-PSG captain is 36 yet has quickly had an impact at Stamford Bridge, avoiding defeat in his first eight games in all competitions and helping the Blues climb to fifth in the Premier League, a competition that has already left an impression on the centre-back.

Away with Brazil on international duty, Silva was asked how English football compares to Ligue 1 and Serie A, where he played for Milan.

"They are three very different football schools," he told a news conference. "I have had a great learning experience in Italy, one of the best schools for the back line and defensive phase.

"I also had great companions in my early days like [Paolo] Maldini and [Alessandro] Nesta, with whom I played for two years, so I was able to learn a lot from them.

"The French championship is a little more physical, stronger and now PSG has a dominance over the opponents and we had to risk a little more.

"And now in the English championship, the last two games I ended up with a lot of headaches because there are aerial plays at all times and, with a very high pace of play, it is very different from the other two leagues.

"I have learned from all that and I put it into practice to help the younger players."

Silva has contested five aerial duels in each of his past two Premier League appearances, against Sheffield United and Burnley, having had five in total across his first three games in the competition.

The Brazil international has won eight of his 15 aerial duels this season.

In Ligue 1 in 2019-20, Silva contested five or more aerial duels on four occasions, winning 31 of 50 across the campaign - the lowest totals of his time at PSG.

Silva has seemingly not been disheartened by his initial experiences at Chelsea and instead has his sights set on an extension to the 12-month deal he signed in August, which has the option of a further year.

"This is my first experience in the Premier League but I hope to continue doing well and to have a contract renewal as well," he added.

Silva has made five blocks so far this season, the most of any Chelsea defender, while only centre-back partner Kurt Zouma (36) can better his 18 clearances.

Fikayo Tomori (96.6 per cent), who has played just 45 minutes, is the sole team-mate who beats Silva's passing accuracy of 92.8 per cent.

Frank Lampard was "not surprised" by Jose Mourinho's accusation that Chelsea players have attempted to win cheap penalties.

Mourinho alleged that Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool have attempted to con officials into awarding a spot-kick in his defence of skipper Harry Kane.

The Portuguese was unhappy with the insinuation that Kane had deliberately backed into Adam Lallana to win a penalty in Tottenham's 2-1 win over Brighton and Hove Albion last weekend.

Speaking earlier this week, Mourinho said: "Kane? I think you are confused. 

"You could be speaking about some Manchester United players, some Man City players, some Liverpool players, some Chelsea players."

Chelsea have already had eight penalties this season but Lampard insists none of those were awarded for a player diving inside the box.

"I wasn't surprised by those comments," he said. "There have been no incidents of diving at Chelsea this season that I've seen. 

"But I wasn't surprised by it, no. I think it's very normal that managers in and around the clubs challenging sometimes mention others with those statements. It didn't affect me."

He added: "I'm not going to tell Jose or any other manager how to do a press conference. 

"I think we all know when we watch these penalty decisions, we know what ones are penalties, what ones are dives, ones that are cleverly bought. I don't want to dwell on it."

Timo Werner successfully converted two penalties for Chelsea in Wednesday's 4-0 win over Rennes in the Champions League, extending their unbeaten run to six matches.

The Blues have kept a clean sheet in five successive games for the first time since October 2010, with Thiago Silva and Kurt Zouma starting together in all but one of those.

Lampard has regularly praised the impact made by experienced defender Silva, who he believes is helping to get the most out of Zouma alongside him.

No player made more clearances than Zouma (4) in the win over Rennes and he also topped the charts for successful passes (84) and touches (99).

"I've been really impressed with Kurt, his form and what he's giving us, scoring and defending from set-pieces, which is a big part of our game," he said.

"I think Thiago can affect people around him. I think of his status in the game and the way he plays it. 

"We talk about partnerships in the team. We can all think of great centre-back partnerships. With Thiago's quality it rubs off not only on Kurt but any player he is paired with.

"I think he's helped Kurt and we now need to sustain that level of performance and keep the good run of clean sheets we're on going. He's certainly affecting the others."

Silva was brought in on a free transfer after his Paris Saint-Germain contract expired at the end of last season - one of seven first-team players signed during a busy close season.

Lampard is grateful to have been heavily backed by owner Roman Abramovich and hopes the signing of Silva in particular can lead to silverware being won.

"People think we did all our business in five minutes. The first year I spent here I couldn't bring players in so I had a long-term view of what players I could bring in," he said.

"It was all very joined up and I was certainly happy with the input I had. We worked hard and a lot of people deserve credit. The next step is to work with that. 

"We've seen good signs of late, players bedding in and getting fit - Thiago among them.

"In terms of the career he's had, he absolutely walks into the bracket of top centre-backs. Teams who achieve stuff have defenders who set those standards. 

"The players know the importance of defending well to win trophies and particularly Premier League titles. 

"But they also need support around them. When you look at Thiago and the early impact he has had, he can be a big deal for us."

Frank Lampard was relieved to learn a hamstring injury to Christian Pulisic was "very minor", with the Chelsea winger having previously been expected to spend weeks on the sidelines. 

Pulisic suffered the injury during the warm-up ahead of the Blues' 3-0 Premier League win at Burnley on Saturday. 

It will keep him out of Wednesday's Champions League clash with Rennes too, but Lampard was left understandably pleased an important player is not facing a long time out of action. 

"Christian had a scan yesterday which showed a very minor injury to his hamstring," Lampard said in a pre-match media conference.  

"He won't be fit for tomorrow, but we will see after that. 

"It's obviously a relief for it to be on the small side. Christian made the right decision not to play in a game that could have made it worse. He's an important player for us. 

"Some players who play on the edge and have speed could be more susceptible. We are looking at ways to manage Christian. 

"We are all working in the same direction to try get him to be match fit as regularly as possible. We know the talent." 

The United States international did not make his first appearance of the 2020-21 season until October because of a hamstring problem.

He scored in Chelsea's 4-0 win over Krasnodar last time out in the Champions League and has created two chances across five appearances in all competitions this season, though he has not been credited with an assist. 

Defender Thiago Silva did not feature against Krasnodar but has played a pivotal role for a Chelsea backline that has kept five clean sheets across the Premier League and Champions League. 

After the upcoming international break, Chelsea will play 12 games in the space of six weeks. 

That packed schedule means Chelsea will likely have to rotate regularly, but Lampard insists managing the centre-back's workload is a simple task because of the Brazil international's professionalism. 

"When you have an experienced player whose such a great professional like Thiago is, that honest conversation [about the workload] is very easy," he added.  

"I'll be very upfront and honest with him about what I think and what he thinks."

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard insisted he never doubted the "incredible" talent of Christian Pulisic as he responded to claims by Salzburg boss Jesse Marsch.

Marsch last week suggested Lampard did not rate United States international Pulisic when he first arrived at Stamford Bridge due to his nationality.

Speaking to Extratime Radio, the American said: "I could see right away that Lampard's idea of Pulisic was shaped a lot by the fact that he was from America.

"When I spoke to him in pre-season a year ago, I was talking to him about having Pulisic and he was kind of like, 'Yes, he's got a lot to learn so we'll see how he does'."

Pulisic has made a big impact during Lampard's 15 months in charge, playing a direct part in 13 Premier League goals since the start of 2018-19.

Only Tammy Abraham (19) has managed more among Chelsea players still at the club, while his 2.75 dribbles completed per game is bettered only by Mateo Kovacic (3.19). 

And after getting off the mark with his first goal of the campaign in Wednesday's 4-0 win over Krasnodar, Lampard reiterated he has never questioned the winger's ability.

"I did read those comments. I was surprised that Jesse read my mind as well as he did!" Lampard said ahead of Saturday's Premier League trip to Burnley.

"It was a game against Salzburg when Christian scored twice in pre-season. I said it was exciting to see how he'd develop with us but Jesse put it across a little differently. 

"Maybe Jesse knows the feeling of American managers coming into Europe. I played in America for 18 months and will never underestimate the desire those players have. 

"Christian has that and incredible talent so it was never in doubt for me. I understand the rigours of it. It's the toughest league in the world to play. 

"What Christian did was find his feet quickly and had a great breakthrough season. His performance was massively impressive. 

"He'll get better and better because he is a young player. I never doubted him. It's important for me to put that straight."

On the back of successive goalless draws, Chelsea found the perfect balance between attack and defence in their Champions League Group E win over Russian side Krasnodar.

Hakim Ziyech marked his full debut with a goal while fellow attackers Callum Hudson-Odoi, Pulisic and Timo Werner were also on target, the latter netting from the penalty spot.

Lampard has once again talked up the importance of making full use of his large squad with three more games to play over the next 10 days.

"Hakim was very good last night, so that was a big plus," he said. "The other teams, particularly those in Europe, are also finding the schedule heavy. We need options. 

"We're also searching for relationships as newer players are learning about each other and how we play. There will be rotation at times. We need everybody."

Thiago Silva did not make the trip to Russia but Lampard will bring the experienced defender back into his squad for the meeting with Burnley.

"He is fit. Taking him out of the squad for Krasnodar was a maintenance issue," he said. "It made sense to leave him out. 

"As a player towards the end of my career – and I'm not saying that's the case with him – it's about making sure we get the best out of him towards the end of the season.

"I spoke with him and he could have played if he had to but I had to put it in context of what is ahead of us."

Chelsea have won five of their six Premier League away games against Burnley, scoring at least twice in each victory. 

Frank Lampard singled out defensive additions Thiago Silva and Edouard Mendy for praise after Chelsea drew 0-0 with Sevilla in the Champions League.

The Blues' last outing saw them concede three times as Southampton snatched a draw at Stamford Bridge, but they looked a far more solid outfit en route to their first point in Group E on Tuesday evening.

Lampard had made three changes to his defence from Saturday, bringing in Reece James at right-back, Mendy in goal and Silva in the heart of the back four.

He reserved special praise for the latter pair, who he believes can have a major impact on Chelsea's defending after arriving during the transfer window.

"It's something you strive for always and I mentioned before about the personnel we had back in today," Lampard told reporters.

"Thiago I thought showed the things I've spoken about, experience and quality; Mendy has probably one good save to make and he makes it, was good with his feet.

"[It was] against a very good team, a very organised defensive performance. They give you a lot of threats, they're very good, that's why they've been so successful in the last year or two, so I was pleased with that side of it.

"We lost a goal in the last minutes at the weekend that loses us two points. When you've got that feeling fresh in your mind, it's really important that you get over it. To get through that game will give us confidence.

"We're going to get better, I keep saying the same thing, but we haven't had the personnel in there playing regularly, getting relationships, working off each other.

"The more we do that, then we'll get better naturally."

Lampard, who has experienced his first goalless draw as Chelsea boss in what was his 62nd match in charge, also hailed work done on the training ground as a key factor in largely keeping a potentially dangerous Sevilla side quiet across the 90 minutes.

He continued: "It's always both. The work is a constant and you analyse the opposition and the threats that they're going to give you. With Sevilla, it was crosses and getting balls in the box.

"They've got quality, they play really well throughout the team but you might expect a team from La Liga to come and try and play a lot of passes through the lines, but they get a lot of crosses in.

"We dealt with all the things they threw at us, we had a few moments ourselves in the game as well. I think it was almost cagey, two good teams cancelling each other out in the first game, which is understandable, and we take the point and move on."

Chelsea's defensive resilience may have come at a cost in terms of their attacking play, with the Blues managing just one attempt on target during the first half.

Their attack did improve after the break, with Chelsea ultimately mustering six attempts in total, with four of those hitting the target.

Frank Lampard was in no mood to play the blame game after an error from Thiago Silva on his Premier League debut and says the Brazil centre-back will become crucial for Chelsea.

Silva was at fault for the second of West Brom's three first-half goals at The Hawthorns, as the Blues had to fight back from an error-strewn opening 45 minutes to draw 3-3 thanks to Mason Mount, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Tammy Abraham.

It was the veteran defender's first action in the Premier League at the age of 36 and it was an unfortunate slip in an otherwise steady top-flight bow.

Chelsea boss Lampard said Silva is experienced enough to own up to his mistakes without the need for him to pile in too.

"Listen Thiago Silva is going to be fantastic for us, he's been incredible in his career," Lampard told a post-match news conference. 

"I will not look at him, I can talk about the mistakes - they're clear and we have to be open and honest about that, but I'll not put any blame on him. We're a team that has to react around that and to be fair the team did in the second half. 

"It's nothing on Thiago, I'm sure he'll stand up and say it was a mistake, other than that I thought he was faultless in the game.

"That's his first Premier League game done and in the bank, we'll get more from him as he gets fitter and the team gets fitter." 

Chelsea's equaliser had a hint of fortune, with Kai Havertz potentially handballing in the area in the build-up.

West Brom boss Slaven Bilic, who also felt there a was a foul prior to Hudson-Odoi bringing it back to 3-2, had no doubts the gal should have been chalked off.

"The third goal is very difficult to accept," Bilic said. "For me that is so clear that I don't even want to talk about it, it is obvious. 

"It's not maybe, it's not possibly handball, it is handball that's end of story, full stop. How someone can say that's not a handball is beyond me."

Kepa Arrizabalaga has been dropped for Chelsea's clash at West Brom as Willy Caballero starts and Thiago Silva makes his Premier League debut as captain.

Spanish goalkeeper Kepa gifted Sadio Mane a second goal with a terrible mistake in Liverpool's 2-0 win at Stamford Bridge last Sunday and looks set to be on his way out of the London club.

Caballero came into the side for the 6-0 EFL rout of Barnsley in midweek and retains his place, with Kepa on the bench.

The signing of Edouard Mendy, who is not ready to start, from Rennes on Thursday made it clear that Kepa does not appear to be in Frank Lampard's plans, with reports he could be set for a loan move.

Silva made his Blues bow against Barnsley and will play in the English top flight for the first time in place of Kurt Zouma - who is not among the substitutes - at the Hawthorns, where he will lead Lampard's side

Jorginho drops to the bench, while striker Tammy Abraham also comes into the side.

Christian Pulisic is nearing a return to action for Chelsea but Frank Lampard is wary of "overcooking" the winger and leaving him prone to injury. 

United States international Pulisic struggled with muscle issues in his first campaign at Stamford Bridge and missed two months at the start of the year with an abductor tear. 

The 22-year-old was impressive upon his return after lockdown, contributing five goals and two assists in all competitions. 

Pulisic is yet to feature this term after going off in the FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal with a hamstring injury in August, but Lampard said on Friday that a return is on the horizon. 

"No, Christian isn't ready for the squad, nor is Hakim Ziyech, but they're both training with us now, which is good news," he told the media ahead of Saturday's Premier League meeting with West Brom. 

"We hope to have them with us in proper match contention over the next week or two."

Lampard is keen to bide his time with Pulisic in particular, aiming to avoid any further injury setbacks when he eventually returns to action. 

"There's always a concern about a player's fitness when the history says there's been some injuries. Last season we did have them with Christian, I was questioned many times on him, when he did and didn't play," said Lampard. 

"Of course, when you look at a player with his recent record, you're trying to find the right balance of getting the best out of him, which we saw in big periods last year, and making sure you don't overcook him and leave him susceptible to injury, particularly with a player of his explosive pace and balance. It's a fine line. 

"We're working on that and Christian's also very open to that. He wants to play, he's so hungry to play and he's very nearly fit now, but it's certainly something we have to manage with him this season. 

"We've all seen the talent and it's something we want to get right. I'm not saying it's a fundamental, chronic issue because it's not, but we want to get as many minutes of Christian – the really great Christian that we saw lots of last season – on the pitch."

New signings Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell made their first Chelsea appearances in the 6-0 EFL Cup victory over Barnsley on Wednesday. 

While Lampard confirmed the pair could start at the Hawthorns, he is again wary of asking for too much too soon from players who are still working towards peak fitness. 

"I believe they are fit enough to start, but I do also have to take into consideration the fact that we play another game with a pretty tight turnaround on Tuesday, then another on Sunday, and then the international players will maybe go and play three games for their country, so I'm managing that one," he said. 

"Having come through that game the other day as they did, I think particularly Thiago did start that game and had 60 minutes in the bank, so that was good to see. 

"With Ben, I'll maybe be a little more cautious just to make sure, his injury's been a bit of a challenging one, so I'll make those calls. But they're in a good place at the moment."

Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard promised Kai Havertz's three-goal haul against Barnsley will be the first of many impressive displays from the club's new signing.

Havertz put in some underwhelming performances in his first two Premier League appearances, but came to the fore with a hat-trick in Wednesday's 6-0 EFL Cup demolition of Championship side Barnsley at Stamford Bridge.

The Germany international star also played a part in another goal as Lampard's side made light work of Barnsley in London midweek.

Lampard has consistently urged patience with the 21-year-old, and suggested his treble showing is merely a sign of what is to come.

"I was delighted with Kai and everything of the night that I wanted from him," Lampard told a news conference.

"It was a great exercise for him, another game to see how we want to work off the ball, but also have freedom on the ball and combinations.

"It's the first of many great nights for him."

Tammy Abraham played ahead of Havertz and opened the scoring, with Ross Barkley and Olivier Giroud also getting in on the act.

In defence, Lampard handed a debut to former Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva, while Ben Chilwell came on for Havertz midway through the second half.

"It's exciting for us," Lampard said of Silva's debut, which lasted just over an hour.

"He has just had a weeks training with us. But he gave something off for us with a leader of authority. At the minute, the fact he can't speak the language doesn't matter too much."

Antonio Rudiger and Ruben Loftus-Cheek were both left out of Chelsea's squad, and Lampard acknowledged the duo could move on before the transfer window closes if it suits Chelsea.

"They weren't in the squad and that was just a choice," Lampard said. "There may be movement, but don't read too much in to them not being in the squad. It will have to be right or the club."

Kai Havertz scored a hat-trick as Chelsea sealed their progression into the EFL Cup fourth round with a dominant 6-0 win over Barnsley.

Havertz had struggled to stamp his authority in his first two Premier League appearances, but the former Bayer Leverkusen star got up and running in English football in style on Wednesday.

With Tammy Abraham opening the scoring, Havertz doubled Chelsea's lead before playing his part in Ross Barkley putting the hosts 3-0 up.

Havertz added to his tally with a superb finish soon after, subsequently rounding off his first senior hat-trick 10 minutes later – Olivier Giroud making it six for Chelsea late on.

Callum Hudson-Odoi squandered a great chance in the opening two minutes and Chelsea were fortunate not to be made to pay when debutant Thiago Silva gifted possession to Patrick Schmidt, whose cross just evaded Cauley Woodrow.

Yet it was the hosts who struck first – Abraham slotting in after dispossessing Aapo Halme.

Mason Mount should have put Chelsea 2-0 up but Havertz made no mistake from the next opportunity, coolly dispatching beyond Bradley Collins from close range.

Willy Caballero kept Barnsley at bay three more times before the break, though hopes of a comeback were ended when Havertz forced Alex Mowatt into an error and Barkley drilled home.

Havertz had his second six minutes later, picking out the bottom-right corner with a wonderful strike.

His hat-trick goal came courtesy of a Collins howler – Barnsley's goalkeeper caught stranded on the edge of his box as Havertz nudged it past him and slammed into an empty net before being subbed off.

Barkley missed a glorious opportunity to add a sixth, but Giroud was on hand to pile further misery on Barnsley when he headed in Ben Chilwell's cross late on.

 

What does it mean? Mourinho reunion next up?

Tottenham may receive a bye to the fourth round due to several Leyton Orient players testing positive for coronavirus, and Chelsea's reward for their victory would be a meeting with their former manager if that proves to be the case. Frank Lampard's side came out on top in both league clashes with Spurs last season.

Havertz arrives with a bang

Lampard has urged patience with Chelsea's new signing and Havertz repaid his manager's belief with an excellent display. Across Europe's top five leagues, only Robert Lewandowski (35), Lionel Messi (32) and Cristiano Ronaldo (31) have been involved in more goals in all competitions in 2020 than the 21-year-old, who has 18 goals and eight assists.

Barnsley no match for the big boys

Gerhard Struber set his side up to attack, but though the Tykes caused Chelsea problems at times, they have now lost 15 of their last 17 EFL Cup matches against top-flight opponents.

What's next?

Chelsea travel to West Brom in the Premier League on Saturday, while Barnsley are in action against Coventry City in the second tier.

Thiago Silva is proud to have joined Chelsea at the age of 36 after his career was threatened by tuberculosis.

While on loan at Dynamo Moscow from Porto in 2005, Silva experienced chest pains and was hospitalised for five months after being diagnosed with the illness.

The centre-back opted against an operation on one of his lungs that would likely have brought a premature end to his time in football and returned to boyhood club Fluminense the following year.

He has since gone on to win the Serie A with Milan, 23 trophies at Paris Saint-Germain – with whom he lost the Champions League final to Bayern Munich last month – and the Copa America with Brazil.

Asked about the serious illness he suffered a decade-and-a-half ago, Silva said: "It was one of the worst experiences in my life because you have a dream as a child to be playing as a professional footballer and when I got TB, it seemed the dream would be over. But, thank God, I had the strength to overcome it and get well.

"It's difficult to talk about it because it brings back these memories, these moments. I remember my last day in the hospital, the doctor told me that I hadn't been cured, that I needed an operation on my lung and that my football career would be over.

"But, thank God, thanks to the qualified people and the specialists, little by little I got better. Little by little, with dedication I managed to return to playing football.

"Definitely it's something that not many people have gone through in their lives and a lot of people didn't recover from a similar illness, so I think about it a lot, these moments and what I've been through and I thankfully had the strength to overcome it.

"I'm very grateful to my family, to my wife, who was very supportive. At the time she was my girlfriend and she was 17, and she helped give me the strength to get over it so I was able to then chase my dreams. Now I can say today that I'm a champion, not just in football but also in life."

With health at the forefront of many people's minds amid the coronavirus pandemic, Silva said: "I'd like to send a message to the young people to tell them to really make the most of their lives.

"If someone is playing football, to really dedicate themselves to playing football. Some people have football as a hobby, but football is a job and life is short and goes by quite quickly.

"In 2005 my life could have been over, but thank God I overcame that illness and today I can now say that I am victorious, both personally and professionally. It's a wonderful experience to now be 36 and a player in the Premier League and to put on a Chelsea shirt at 36. It's immense responsibility and a great source of pride."

Silva was signed to provide experience to Frank Lampard's youthful squad and it is not weighing on his mind that he is on a one-year contract at a club that does not typically hang on to older players.

The veteran defender - who could make his debut against Barnsley in the EFL Cup on Wednesday - hopes to prove he is still capable of being an asset at the highest level and earning a place in the Brazil squad for the 2022 World Cup.

"I think when you get to a certain age, the tendency is that you sign this type of contract. I have no doubt that I will give everything and do my best and contribute," Silva added.

"I prepare and work really hard in everything I do. I love football, I love preparation, and it's not a case of preparing on a Friday for the Saturday, this type of preparation goes way back, so I'm totally relaxed about the contract.

"Whether Chelsea will want to renew it or not, I don't know. If Chelsea feel I haven't met expectations or contributed, we'll sit down and talk about that. I'm not worried at all and I will prepare to do my best possible and really help to contribute to this new team and new project.

"I've accepted this new challenge. It's going to be really good for me. Everyone knows my ambition is to play in the World Cup in two years, when I'll be 38 years old."

Thiago Silva insists "age is just a number" and he is not worried about adapting to the speed of Premier League football following his move to Chelsea.

Chelsea signed 36-year-old centre-back Silva on a free transfer following the expiration of his contract at Champions League finalists Paris Saint-Germain.

The Brazil international is set to make his debut in the EFL Cup third-round meeting with Barnsley on Wednesday, three days before the Blues head to West Brom in the Premier League.

Silva is not concerned about being shown up in England's top flight, referring to Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti's statement that he would have signed Usain Bolt over James Rodriguez if he wanted a sprinter.

"I don't worry at all because I know where I want to get to. I really have high hopes about this young team," said Silva on his birthday on Tuesday.

"Physically, I feel really good – age is just a number on your documentation. Physically, I feel very young and I've been preparing my whole life.

"People who know me know I put 200 per cent into my work and this is a great opportunity that Chelsea and Lampard have given me and I really don't want to let them down.

"I never saw myself in the Premier League before, because I thought it was too difficult style of football. I didn't have any desire to play in the Premier League because my impression of the football played was of long balls, high balls and long shots.

"I couldn't really see myself playing in this league but over time I saw that it developed tremendously, there's a lot more technical quality. A lot of teams play with the ball on the ground, with the full-backs attacking in the area and every team has their own idea and strengths but I previously saw it characterised by long balls and that didn't appeal to me.

"I know how to play that way, but my preference is to play with the ball on the ground. I know my quality, little-by-little, the Premier League football really won me over. Anyone who knows me, knows that.

"At 36, I am arriving to play in one of the best championships in the world. This is usually a league of young players but I am coming here as an older player and I see it as because Frank Lampard and Chelsea want a player of my experience.

"If someone wants a runner, then I refer to the words that Carlo Ancelotti used for James: 'If you want someone to run, they can sign Usain Bolt'.

"With my experience and the young players here, I hope to help them in this new adventure."

Frank Lampard has no doubts Kai Havertz will thrive for Chelsea, but insists the Germany youngster must first get up to full fitness.

Havertz arrived in a reported £72million (€80m) deal from Bayer Leverkusen, though he has so far failed to spark into life at Stamford Bridge.

After an indifferent display in his debut against Brighton and Hove Albion, Havertz struggled to impose himself on the game as Chelsea went down 2-0 to Liverpool on Sunday.

Yet Lampard has no concerns over the 21-year-old, who he suggested is not fully up to speed.

"Kai has played various positions in career, as number nine, number eight and a number 10," Lampard told a news conference.

"He played lots off the right for Leverkusen and I have my own vision going forward.

"The key now is getting him fit. Kai, with the situation we are in we aren't in a position where we can wait. We need to get him fit, and it'll become very clear why he's here."

Chelsea spent close to £200m bolstering their squad heading into this season, though injuries have left Lampard without some big names. 

Havertz and Timo Werner have featured in both of Chelsea's league matches, but Ben Chilwell, Hakim Ziyech and Thiago Silva have yet to play, while Christian Pulisic has also been out.

However, Lampard confirmed he will be able to welcome back two of those players for the EFL Cup tie with Barnsley on Wednesday, with Chilwell and Silva, who celebrated his 36th birthday on Tuesday, set to be included.

"Chilwell is in the squad for tomorrow, Pulisic and Ziyech are getting closer," Lampard added.

"[Silva] is in the squad for tomrorow, so not sure if a present or not for him – he's getting fit, in the squad and I'll make a decision on how many minutes he may get in the game, what's best for him."

Thiago Silva says he has joined Chelsea with the goal of winning the Premier League title, not just for the experience of playing in England's top flight.

The centre-back, who will turn 36 on Tuesday, signed a one-year deal with the option of a further 12 months after leaving Paris Saint-Germain.

Silva is excited to play in the Premier League for the first time in the latter stages of his career, but is clear that his motivations stretch beyond just getting a taste of the high-profile competition.

He is optimistic Chelsea will enjoy an impressive season that can lead to silverware, while playing in the 2022 World Cup for Brazil also remains a key motivation.

"The way I see it, it is the toughest league in the world, with six or seven big teams genuinely fighting for the title so the motivation is massive," Silva, who spent eight years with PSG with his last game being the Champions League final, said to Chelsea's website.

"What motivates me, day by day, is the hunger to win. To win everything within my reach.

"Coming to the Premier League, my main goal is to win the league title and I'm certain that we'll be fighting for that every step of the way. 

"The team is really strong, we've got a great coach and I've come here to contribute in whatever way I can to ensure that we get as close as possible to achieving those aims.

"That's what motivates me: stepping out onto the pitch, and then winning, winning, and winning some more. I don't think about anything else.

"What Chelsea represents to me is a source of great happiness and motivation to be a part of a new project, a new family and I hope that this will be a very special year together.

"With our young group, as well as some more experienced players like our captain [Cesar] Azpilicueta, we've got all it takes for a great season. We've signed some top players.

"You can be sure I will do everything I can to repay the confidence [Frank Lampard has shown in me] out on the pitch."

Silva continued: "The prospect of playing at the next World Cup is another thing that really drives me.

"I'll be more or less 38 years old by the time of the next World Cup and I'm hugely motivated to be in good shape for it.

"The work that I'm putting in to make this a reality already started a while back and now Chelsea have given me a great opportunity to continue playing at the highest level."

Asked if he had a message for the Chelsea fans, Silva added: "I'm arriving 100 per cent motivated for this new project - I'm not just here for the experience, I'm here to win. 

"I hope that they believe, just as we do, that this is going to be a very special year and one full of success for the club."

Hakim Ziyech's official Chelsea debut will have to wait for at least a couple of weeks after Frank Lampard confirmed the new signing has a knee injury.

Media reports began circulating on Wednesday suggesting Morocco international Ziyech was a doubt for Monday's trip to Brighton and Hove Albion for the Blues' Premier League opener.

Ziyech arrived from Ajax in pre-season after a £33.3million deal had been agreed last term, with the forward boosting his reputation in 2018-19 after a number of impressive performances en route to the Champions League semi-finals.

But Chelsea fans will have to wait a bit longer to see him in competitive action, as Lampard confirmed the reports he has sustained an injury.

Ziyech's fellow new signings Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell are also not yet ready for their debuts.

"Ziyech took an injury to his knee in the friendly against Brighton and he won't be fit," Lampard said in Thursday's pre-match news conference.

"We are working on him and hope it will only be a matter of weeks, a couple of weeks, we hope, but we'll have to wait and see on that.

"Chilwell is working towards fitness. He won't be fit for Brighton. He has developed and improved this week and going in the right direction, which is good news for us.

"Thiago Silva is in London but won't be training until the weekend, so I doubt very much that he's in contention for the Brighton game.

"Out of the new ones, that's where we are at. Billy Gilmour is a longer-term injury, but other than that we are in decent shape."

Regarding Cesar Azpilicueta and Christian Pulisic, who were both forced off in the FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal in August, Lampard added: "I missed them off earlier – yes, I am certainly very happy to have them both back.

"Yesterday [Wednesday] was their first day fully training with the team, so they're in contention for Monday.

"I have to be careful and I have a squad to pick from, but the way they're training and their attitude to come back, it looks like they are over their injuries. I just have to make sure I manage them both back in their own ways."

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