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Media Watch: Chelsea part of Premier League trend favouring English talent, former Blues defender believes criticism of Frank Lampard is unfair, Tiemoue Bakayoko linked with return to French football

In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, the Blues’ use of three English players last Sunday is part of a Premier League trend towards fielding homegrown talent, former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot says the criticism of Frank Lampard after the loss at Old Trafford is unwarranted and Tiemoue Bakayoko is being linked with a move back to Ligue 1.

These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.

Chelsea part of trend towards using English talent

Frank Lampard’s decision to name Ross Barkley, Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount in his starting line-up on opening weekend appear to be part of a larger trend for utilising homegrown English talent in the Premier League, the Daily Mail reports.

According to the paper, 83 of the 220 players who started last weekend’s league matches were English, the highest in nine years.

‘The last time a higher number of English players started on the opening weekend of the Premier League came in the 2010-11 season when 85 played,’ stated the paper.

‘There was even a large contingency of homegrown players that featured for the top six clubs with a total number of 22 English players starting - the highest number since 2016-17 season.

‘All the English starters for the top six clubs were under 30 years of age, with an average of 23 years and 351 days.’

Melchiot feels criticism of Lampard is unfair

Former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot has told TalkSport it is too early to criticise Frank Lampard following Chelsea’s opening day loss to Manchester United.

Despite making an impressive start at Old Trafford, the Blues were beaten 4-0 as a series of costly mistakes led to a heavy defeat in Lampard’s first game as head coach.

However, Melchiot insisted it is too early to judge his former Blues team-mate, even if there is little time for the Blues to recover before our Super Cup match against Liverpool on Wednesday.

‘I thought they started the game really well. When you go to Old Trafford it’s always tricky, but I felt Chelsea were in control in the first 15 or 20 minutes,’ said the Dutchman.

‘Of course, when the penalty happens, it changed the whole game.

‘It’s too early in the season to start talking. The only bad thing for Frank is the big games come so quick.

‘But hopefully Frank can keep the young boys motivated and he doesn’t let their heads drop too early.’

Bakayoko linked with Monaco return

Citing a report in French daily L’Equipe, the Sport Witness website states Tiemoue Bakayoko could be headed back to his former club Monaco on a loan deal.

The 24-year-old midfielder joined the Blues from the Ligue 1 side in 2017 but after spending last season on loan at AC Milan, the report indicates he could be set for a return to the principality.

‘[L’Equipe] explain talks have already taken place with the player about a possible return, as Monaco are “seriously considering” the possibility of bringing the defensive midfielder back,’ states the website.

‘Any deal would have to be a loan for the 24-year-old, because spending €40m on Ben Yedder looks set to use up most of their budget, but L’Equipe state a move for Bakayoko “would be one of the more credible options” as he already knows the manager, the team and the club.’

The Ligue 1 transfer window remains open until 2 September.

Villa defender reveals Terry’s role in his adaptation

New Aston Villa defender Bjorn Engels has revealed the important role John Terry has played in his adaptation to the Premier League following his summer move from Reims.

According to the Belgian defender, the former Chelsea captain, who is now Villa's assistant coach, helped to ease his transition after his arrival at Villa Park.

‘I get a lot of confidence from the trainer (Dean Smith) but also from Terry,’ said Engels, as reported by Belgian publication HLN.

‘When I arrived, I was a bit scared. You look up to him: such a legend. You expect him to step onto a training field with an attitude of “who are you”, but he is not at all condescending. Completely the opposite even.

‘I have always looked up to the Premier League and there you are on the training field with someone like that every day and after the practice session you also regularly sit together for individual adjustments. Fantastic, right?

‘I can't imagine a better mentor. If you look at the legendary defenders in the Premier League, it's him and maybe Rio Ferdinand. If you can learn from him, he is the ideal guide in a new competition.’

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