Mason Mount has spoken about his desire to contribute goals from midfield this season as he looks to establish himself as a regular starter in the Chelsea team.
The 20-year old bagged a brace at the Madejski Stadium on Sunday afternoon to help the Blues to a pre-season victory over Reading, taking his summer tally to three goals after a strike against St Patrick’s in Dublin earlier this month.
‘It was a good day because it’s a tough place to come to play and Reading started the game very well,’ Mount reflected afterwards. ‘We had two teams in each half and everybody got some minutes so it was a good pre-season game and obviously we’re working hard in training to get ready for the season.’
Mount played the second 45 minutes in Berkshire as Frank Lampard switched personnel and system at the break, utilising a 4-4-2 with a midfield diamond in the second half. With closer proximity between the central players, there was more intricacy to our passing game, while Mount’s double added to earlier goals from Ross Barkley and Kenedy.
‘The goals are going to come from different places and I want to contribute towards that from midfield,’ claimed Mason. ‘In the final third, it’s down to us to create and play freely. I think we did that in the second half and tried to combine in and around the box. In pre-season games, it doesn’t always come off but we’re working on it in training.’
Mount clearly feels at ease working under Lampard following their time together at Derby County last term and he admitted his return to Chelsea after loan spells at Vitesse and in the Championship had come at the perfect time.
‘I feel like I’m home after having two seasons away on loan and now coming back,’ he said. ‘It’s very exciting times for the younger players because there’s an opportunity there but it’s not given.
‘You have to work hard and show to the manager that you’re ready to step up and get into the team. That’s my goal, I’m loving my football at the moment and playing where I feel most at home.’
Lampard himself was pleased with the performances of Mount and Barkley in particular, citing competition for places as key for the coming campaign.
‘You look at the goals, Ross and Mason with his two goals as well,’ said the boss when asked which individual performances stood out. ‘They’re two young players, Mason is a little bit younger, but they are vying for similar positions which is great. I want competition in midfield and there were good performances all over the pitch.
‘The good from today is very good and we will keep trying to improve on that. Conceding three goals is not what we want so we can look at that and work on that for the next two weeks. Day by day we are working harder and it's the way I want to train, the way I want to work, what I want to see on the pitch.
‘The buy-in from the players has been really good. They are winners here and they have been winning in recent years while I’ve been away from the club. I’ve been delighted with the way the lads have trained and we need to keep working as hard as we can. We have two very tough games coming this week and then we have to get ready for Manchester United.’