Skip to main content

Frank Lampard opens up on his Chelsea philosophy and gives explanation for recent downturn in form

Frank Lampard

Frank Lampard has admitted that Chelsea have struggled to break down teams who defend with a "low block" this season.

The Blues head into Sunday's crunch clash with Tottenham three points clear of their London rivals in the race for the top four.

Chelsea previously held a more substantial lead in the final Champions League qualification spot, but Lampard's side have lost four of their last five league games.

And the former England international has conceded that his team have found it difficult against a certain type of opponent, having been beaten by Everton, West Ham and Bournemouth.

"That's probably where we've had our problems recently, particularly at Stamford Bridge where our home form has not been great," he told Sky Sports.

"The teams have set up with a low block and how we've tended to be, which is what we regularly play with, is having two wingers and the striker with Tammy [Abraham] there generally.

"We've changed a little bit for different games and that generally depends on personnel and that's whether you decide to put Mason [Mount] in the No.10 role and give them a problem behind their midfield or you go either side and you try and get behind them slightly to the side with one pivot behind.

"What I don't mind is having this fluidity with how we play. With the midfield players we have, they have the ability to play in different positions. The problem we've had recently, which has been the disappointing thing from my point of view, is that there have been two lines and you have to break the lines.

"At times, that means making run after run, making them from behind and it's easy to get into a safe phase of playing in front of that block. I'm not saying we've done that all the time but when we're breaking those lines, you have to be relentless.

"We talk about the youth in our team and that can be understandable sometimes when a game gets a bit hard, particularly when you're at home and the fans expect to see a low block.

"They expect to see us create and in some games, we have created a lot, but in the last game against Bournemouth, it's the one where I said we hadn't created enough. We were safe and we played in front. What we're also trying to do is get our full-backs in to play.

"We all know that in modern football, the full-back is the fancy thing and Liverpool have probably set that tone in the last two years with the amount of assists they're getting from out wide.

"So we do ask for that if Willian does want to end up in the inside pockets, which we're very happy and comfortable for him and [Christian] Pulisic, Callum [Hudson-Odoi], Pedro [Rodriguez], those kind of players to be there.

"Can we join in and when we're joining in, can we then become that two again when you have a little bit of security because you're happy to let the full-backs push on."

Chelsea will move six points clear of Tottenham if they beat their rivals away from home on Sunday.

READ MORE

The 100 best footballer players in the world: The full list revealed

Arseblog: Why Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal appointment might actually work

No, Liverpool’s new signing Takumi Minamino has not just been bought for ‘shirt sales’