Frank Lampard scouting report – how did the new Chelsea manager measure up? – The Telegraph

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Frank Lampard scouting report – how did the new Chelsea manager measure up? – The Telegraph







Frank Lampard, Manager of Chelsea embraces Cesar Azpilicueta of Chelsea after the Premier League match between Manchester United and Chelsea FC at Old Trafford 
Frank Lampard commiserates with Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta after the 4-0 defeat at Old Trafford

Credit:
 Michael Regan/Getty Images


FrankLampard’s first match in charge of Chelsea ended in a chastening 4-0 defeat by Manchester Unitedafter an encouraging start and dominance of possession was ruined by rashly conceding a penalty and an alarming vulnerability to the counter-attack. So,how did Chelsea’s new manager measure up?  

How did he set up?

Having experimented with different formations in pre-season,Lampard opted for a standard 4-2-3-1 at Old Trafford with some bold decisions to fill those roles. Injuries left little choice but to start Kurt Zouma in the centre of defence while a lack of match fitness left N’Golo Kanté on the bench with Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic selecting themselves in the midfield two.

Butthe front four positions were where Lampard rolled the dice a little, starting Pedro wide on the right ahead of Christian Pulisic. Lampard had promised to give youth its chance this season and, sure enough, there was a Chelsea debut for Mason Mount, on loan with him at Derby last season, in the No10 position, pushing Ross Barkley wide on the left of the attacking midfield three.

Finally, Tammy Abraham – yet another player who was away on loan last season – was rewarded for a strong pre-season with the No9 shirt, and a first ever Chelsea start, ahead of Olivier Giroud.

How did he change things?

There was little to alter in the first half, given Chelsea’s relative dominance and 55 per cent possession. Even when Lampard started to work through his subs, with the introduction of Pulisic, it was a like-for-like swap with the debutant taking Barkley’s wide position.

Christian Pulisic was introduced for Ross Barkley who started on the left of an attacking midfield trio

Credit:
 Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Similarly, the introduction of Giroud for Abraham was a straight replacement. After United’s third, both full-backs were given licence to push up and Mount played more of a striker’s role, alongside Giroud, as Chelsea had the look of 4-4-2 about them at times.

How effective were his substitutions?

Just before the hour, Lampard turned to his bench with Pulisic on for Barkley, before bringing on Giroud after 65 minutes. Unfortunately for Chelsea, United made it 2-0 as the striker was waiting to come on and the game was over. The introduction of Kanté was designed simply to give the Frenchman game time.

How was he on the touchline?

Lampard spent the opening few minutes sitting stoically in the Chelsea dug-out but could not help himself and was soon pitchside. Suited, tieless and with a couple of his shirt buttons undone, Lampard looked composed, demonstrative but also encouraging as his frantic hand-clapping attempted to inspire his players.

Even when Zouma’s horrendous challenge made a gift of a penalty, Lampard did nothing more than turn back, head down, muttering to himself. Ever the player, Lampard also used an early injury break to bring out water bottles for his players – usually the task of a lowly kit man or physio – and cannily used the pause to pass on more instructions to his men.

As the game wore on, Lampard became more animated, showing gestures of disbelief at his players’ errors and near misses. As the rain worsened in the second half, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer donned a rain jacket but Lampard continued to brave the elements, at least until United killed the game and a stern-faced Chelsea manager retreated to his bench.

By the end of a miserable afternoon, while the Chelsea fans chanted “Super Frank Lampard,” the Blues boss was being serenaded of calls of “You’re getting sacked in the morning” by their United counterparts.

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