Analysis

Lampard reflects on a performance of character, praises defensive resolve and updates on Chilwell’s injury

Frank Lampard praised the character of his side after watching them return to winning ways in battling fashion against West Ham on Monday night, while there was also an update on the fitness of Ben Chilwell, who left the field early on…

Thiago Silva’s header had us in front for the vast majority of the London derby but the visitors applied pressure throughout and, despite not registering a single shot on target, there were certainly moments of pressure in the Blues box.

A late brace from Tammy Abraham gave the scoreline a more comfortable feel but Lampard acknowledged afterwards that it required plenty of resilience from his men to claim the points.

‘The performance was really good against a team with the quality of West Ham and what they’re doing at the moment,’ he said. 

‘Our defensive game was great. I wasn’t sure it would be a beautiful game because there was a bit of pressure today and they’re a good side but the lads dealt with that side of it really well.

‘We started really well but in the second half for periods, we didn’t have as much of the ball and getting Mateo Kovacic on helped us because he got us on the ball to help us through that final period. 

‘It wasn’t vintage from us but we were good in parts. The best part for me was the character the lads shown, having come into the game off the back of two defeats.’

Lampard was pleased with the work of two-goal Tammy Abraham…

‘It’s good for his confidence clearly. You have to work for your goals and he worked for them today because he put a lot of effort in. I wanted him to be a handful and to have energy and move the backline, which he did. 

‘Oli Giroud has been doing it for us in his own way and scoring goals so it was a decision more on the opposition today to play Tammy and I was pleased with how he did.’

There was an update on Chilwell, who went off injured early on, and Reece James, who missed the game...

‘I expect he (Chilwell) will be doubtful for Arsenal. He turned his ankle, tried to carry on but it was too painful so we’ll have a scan or whatever tomorrow and try to see how bad he is. Reece and Chilly have been doing really well so we hope both their injuries are not too bad and they'll be in and around those two games over Christmas.'

A clean sheet was also welcomed…

‘The defence were great. Thiago Silva was the leader but Azpilicueta came in and did brilliantly. As full-backs, you have to defend your zone when they’re crossing the ball again and again. They’re very good at set-pieces so it’s something that we’ve worked on a lot in training and personnel like Thiago clearly help a lot. 

‘Some of our defending of the box this season has been really good and consistent and that has to stay, particularly against opponents like we had tonight.’

Lampard feels Timo Werner’s luck in front of goal will change soon…

‘I’m not worried. Every striker will want to be scoring goals, it’s what they ultimately get judged on and that’s why Timo was a great acquisition for us because of the level of goals he’s scored in the last few years. 

‘He’s a player in a new league and we have to give him time to settle but he’s getting into positions regularly, he’s scaring teams and giving them a problem. It’s not quite going in for him at the moment but as soon as that changes then we’ll see goals from Timo Werner for sure.’

Finally, Frank assessed where he feels the team are at…

‘It feels okay but I still want more. We want to keep pushing and we have that desire for more. We know anyone can beat anyone, this season more than most, so we have to keep pushing. 

‘The higher we can aim, the more level-headed we can stay after wins and we can just prove that we can be better. We’ve got tough games coming up over Christmas so there are more challenges to come for us to deal with.’
 

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