Interview

Lampard on transfers and facing Man City

Frank Lampard has discussed the chances of new players coming in during the January transfer window and what his team needs to do to start the year on a high when we host Manchester City.

With the transfer window open for the next month, the usual speculation around player moves has begun and our head coach revealed he is open to the possibility of new signings, although he suggested any incoming business will likely involve current players moving on first.

'I have ideas,’ said Lampard. ‘We have a big squad, we’ll have to see if that changes, if there are opportunities for players who aren’t playing so much. That will be a conversation between the player, club and myself.

‘Then we’ll see if we can strengthen in the right way, but we’re not jumping up and down to do so. My focus this year is purely on work because we have new players, because we have young players, so I’m focusing on that. But we’ll see, it’s a long month.’

In terms of that work with his existing group of players, his first task is trying to get back to winning ways when Manchester City come to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

After a disappointing defeat at Arsenal, Lampard saw a much improved performance against Aston Villa, even if we had to settle for a draw. Following that game, he explained what the difference was and what it will take to go one better with victory in our next fixture.

‘Arsenal was probably in my opinion the worst performance of the season, because of our first half, not the second. Against Villa we had more energy and we had opportunities where we should have won the game, but we have to keep those energy levels up.

‘It was slow against Arsenal, it needs to be quick against Manchester City. It also needs to be disciplined against them defensively. So I want to see a lot of discipline in how we defend and a lot of speed in our game when we attack.

‘I’m confident in us as a team because I know when we play as well as we can, particularly at Stamford Bridge, we have an opportunity to beat anybody. So I’m confident in us, but I know we need to be at our best to win because of the level of opposition. They’re a very strong outfit, very well managed, they don’t concede many, they have lots of threats in attacking areas. So we’ll have to focus on ourselves and be at our best.’

The game against Manchester City also presents an opportunity to make a positive start to 2021 by winning our first game of the year, and Lampard says it will be an important match with the two teams currently level on points in the table and his side looking to return to top form.

‘It’s a game we want to win against a very good opposition. They’re always going to be there or there abouts so to be up there with them, even with our recent run of form in the last few games, is a plus and an opportunity to win a game against a competitor.

‘It’s important because we come off the back of a few games where we’ve not been at our best and we’ve dropped a few points. Fortunately we had a long unbeaten run before that so the league table doesn’t look too bad, we’re very close to the top four positions. It’s important for us mentally, because we need to start winning games regularly.’

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