After registering his first Premier League home win as Blues head coach, Frank Lampard has revealed the biggest positive of our 2-0 victory over Brighton and what his players need to do to get off the mark in the Champions League at Lille.
Second-half goals from Jorginho and Willian secured a deserved three points for Chelsea on Saturday afternoon, making it back-to-back triumphs at Stamford Bridge following our Carabao Cup win over Grimsby Town in midweek.
Despite previously going four matches without a win at our west London home, there had been moments to cheer for the Blues faithful in each of those fixtures – but on this occasion, a patient display, in which we created chances throughout, was rewarded with two goals and a first clean sheet of the campaign.
‘I wanted to be really positive at half-time,’ said Lampard. ‘It’s easy to lose patience, or stop doing the right things because it’s not coming off, but we were actually creating and that wasn’t the point – the point was to keep doing the right things, moving it quickly and believe it was going to come. And it did.
‘We’re working a lot on trying to keep switching the play, moving it quickly from side to side. Sometimes, when we forget that and forget ourselves for a moment, we slow it down too much and it’s something I don’t like to see.
‘I don’t think it helps the crowd or the atmosphere when you slow it down, when you go back to the goalkeeper and go across sideways when you can play forward. At times, when we were at our best, we played forward, we were punchier and sharper, and that’s what made us create so many chances.
‘I like watching teams that are sharp, that move it quickly, that are physical and have energy. We have quality, so it’s about trying to put that all together.’
Victory on Saturday took us into a group of five teams, topped by Tottenham Hotspur in fifth place, level on 11 points after seven Premier League matches.
While there are clear signs of progress being made by the squad, Lampard and his coaching staff will continue to drill the same messages into the players on the training field as we look to build on our two-game winning streak when we resume our Champions League campaign at Lille on Wednesday night.
‘I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, because what we’ve shown so far this season probably is moments and patches of games of good stuff where we want to get to and then other moments where we haven’t done,’ he added.
‘So, to get overconfident at this point would be wrong on my part and the team’s part. Today was a nice step forward – one game, but a nice step forward. Some of the football we want to play, moving the ball quicker for most of the game, but I still feel there is a transitional element. With the young players, and some of them have made their full debut for Chelsea this season, we must give them time and they will get better.’
The experience factor is certainly something which becomes even more apparent when it comes to Europe’s premier club competition, as we discovered in the 1-0 home defeat to Valencia on matchday one.
Now we continue our Group H campaign with our first away fixture a short journey across the Channel to face a side also looking to rebound from an opening-round defeat, as Lille were defeated 3-0 by Ajax.
‘For some, it will be their first taste of that [a Champions League away game] and they need to learn very quickly,’ said Lampard. ‘Anywhere in Europe, away in the Champions League is tough.
‘There’s a mindset to it, an approach to it, and our concentration levels have to be maximum. We saw that against Valencia, where we were the better team, but we 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 that and the young players on that front.’