Lampard insists Werner and Havertz are least of his concerns as Chelsea aim to find balance between defence & attack

Comments (0)
Chelsea split main image
Getty Images
The Blues duo have yet to hit the ground running despite a few bright moments in the first few games of their career in west London

Frank Lampard believes Chelsea have little cause for concern after failing to score in their last two games, insisting he has total faith that Timo Werner and Kai Havertz will hit their groove soon.

Chelsea managed just one shot on target in a 0-0 draw with Manchester United on Saturday, the same scoreline of the midweek stalemate with Sevilla in the Champions League.

The Blues have moved to a more defensive approach this week after starting the season in a more open style, but have yet to find balance or get the best out of their attack. 

Still, head coach Lampard is backing his Germany internationals along with the likes of Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic to make the difference over the course of the season.

"I am very happy with Timo," Lampard told reporters via a Zoom video press conference. "If you go back to the game before that, he scored two goals and Kai Havertz scores a goal. I am least worried about the front end of the pitch with the players that we have there.

"It is normal that it will take some time for relationships [to build]. For when we have got to put the ball in behind, the ball into feet, clearly these things are going to take time to build. The reason we brought Timo and Kai into the club is to add to the quality we already have here.

"Hakim Ziyech is looking like he is getting close to starting a game with his fitness. I have no worries about that. The last bit didn’t happen for us today. It is normal, that happens in football but I am very happy with the players."

Under Lampard, Chelsea have typically been a proactive pressing team that likes to keep possession, but they have sat back to defend deeper in the last week and have looked to play longer passes.

Lampard has admitted that the Blues are still looking to get the balance right between defence and attack, while praising the recent impact of his 36-year-old defender Thiago Silva.

"Where we have conceded more goals in certain games than we would have liked this season, it is important to address those problems," Lampard added. "You obviously address them at the back and I thought we defended the box very well today.

"Defending for me, at this level, is about concentration. Concentration is what will define defending in top players generally. What you saw in Thiago Silva today is a defender who concentrates at every moment of the game in every minute, to not just affect things for himself but affects those around him. I think that was a big plus today.

"The balance of the team is something we are constantly trying to work on. We got into some nice areas in the final third but didn’t have the usual spark that we have seen already from Timo, from Kai already or what Christian can do. That is normal.

"I will make a big positive of the fact that we defended very well today, at times we had good control, but we did not have that penetration that we normally have."

Thiago Silva

Elsewhere, Manchester City drew away at West Ham and Liverpool picked up all three points against Sheffield United but weren't comfortable in their 2-1 win.

Those big clubs, alongside the likes of Chelsea, United, Arsenal and Tottenham have all dropped points early on in the season.

Lampard pointed to a lack of pre-season and fans as part of the issues facing the "big six", which has been caused by the overall challenges of playing amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"I think it is a hard one to pinpoint as there can be a number of factors," he concluded. "The fans are a factor, but I don’t know why it certainly feels like a factor. My feeling is from talking about ourselves is we went to play to Arsenal in the cup final a week after the season ended.

"A lot of the other teams finished their season when we played Wolves, so I couldn’t give the lads a few days [before the final]. Then we went to Munich one week later, so I couldn’t give the lads a few days there. Then the lads had shy of two weeks off.

"Then we come back in and we had double figures of isolation for two weeks. So it is not easy, I hate excuses because you only want to move forward but from our point of view, and we had new players coming into the team.

Article continues below

"Football is all about relationships on the pitch. It is always about the timing of the pass one forward wants, whether you go inside, or you come on the outside. Those sorts of things are what you work on the training pitch.

"We are now working on them in game to try and get a lot of improvement in the team. It is normal for results to be affected when you are talking about teams you expect to be at the top.

"We just need to keep our head on and improve, because we have a lot of faith in the squad. Today shows the basis of being able to keep a clean sheet and show resilience. I am less worried [about] relationships at the top of the pitch as that will be down to individual quality and we certainly have that."