Willian and Pedro have both agreed extensions to their existing contracts that allow them to play for Chelsea this season beyond 30 June.
As a result of the global pandemic and the subsequent delayed conclusion to the campaign, Premier League clubs unanimously agreed to be allowed to enter into short-term contract extensions with players whose deals were due to expire at the end of this month.Willian and Pedro were among those affected, and they and the club have now mutually agreed to extend contracts until the finale of the current season. It means they will be available for our remaining Premier League fixtures in 2019/20, as well as any future involvement in the FA Cup and Champions LeagueWillian has been a regular under Frank Lampard this season, playing 38 times in all competitions. He has scored seven goals and set up a further six, and earlier this season made his 300th appearance for the club in what is his seventh year in west London.The 31-year-old has featured in all our league games this season bar the very first one at Old Trafford, when a hamstring injury ruled him out. He has most often been deployed on the right wing by his former team-mate Lampard, but has also played wide left, or in a more attacking central midfield position behind a striker.Willian scored from outside the box in our last two fixtures before lockdown, the home wins over Liverpool and Everton, and registered a brace in our victory away to Tottenham in December.
Lampard has also noted how Willian has led by example to the many younger team-mates around him.
Back in March, Frank Lampard identified Pedro as somebody who could play an important part in the season run-in, and the boss will now have the experienced Spaniard at his disposal for the remaining fixtures.So far Pedro has made 18 appearances this season - 13 of them starts - and scored twice, including in our last fixture before the lockdown break, against Everton. His other goal, a penalty against Grimsby, came on the evening he captained Chelsea for the first time.The 32-year-old featured in every minute of our opening three matches, before a hamstring problem sustained in the warm-up at Carrow Road proved the start of a problematic few months with injuries.
Although it would not be until the new year that he played 90 minutes again, his unparalleled track record as a serial winner has been an important characteristic among the squad for Lampard, particularly with the transition this term towards a younger squad built around emerging homegrown talent. His performances against Liverpool and Everton prior to lockdown showcased what he can still offer on the pitch.