Analysis

Azpilicueta: I knew Tammy was ready for Chelsea

Cesar Azpilicueta believes the team are starting to get the results our performances deserve, and the defender has also praised the impact made by Tammy Abraham following the striker's superb goal at St Mary's. 

Like his boss Frank Lampard, Azpilicueta acknowledged our win at Southampton contained the occasional difficult spell, including when the hosts scored their goal.

Yet again however we showed our potency on the road, making it 12 goals in our past three away league games. Azpilicueta says the side he skippers has plenty going for it right now, and contains the potential to continue rising up the table from our current fifth position.

‘I would like to have had a clean sheet because as a defender I am happy when we don’t concede goals,’ stressed Azpi.

‘We have improved because we have been conceding less goals than previously, but we can do even better. Attacking wise we scored four goals and had a few chances, even if we didn’t play maybe as well as other games. The game was quite messy; it was tough to keep the ball because they put a lot of pressure on us. For moments we did well.

‘We are improving. We knew at the beginning sometimes we were playing well enough to win games, but we were a bit unlucky. The team has been working hard. At the start of the season we had the belief and the confidence in everyone. We are starting to get results, but we are still improving and we know we can go even higher.’

We were set on our way at St Mary’s by a superb Tammy Abraham goal. His eighth in the Premier League this season moves him joint-top of the scorers’ chart, and Azpilicueta has not been surprised by how quickly he has adapted to leading the line for Chelsea. The Spaniard was on the pitch when Abraham made his two sub appearances for us off the bench at the end of the 2015/16 campaign.

‘I had confidence in him because I have known him since he was quite young,’ explained Azpilicueta.

‘Every time I saw him his work ethic was very good. Last season he had an amazing spell at Aston Villa, he was a key player for them, he scored a lot of goals. I knew he was ready for us, and for the Premier League. As soon as he arrived he worked hard and wanted to help the team.

‘Strikers live for goals so it’s great for him. He’s doing incredibly well and he scored an amazing goal. I’m very happy for him and I’m sure he can give us a lot more happiness in the future.’

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