Frank Lampard has challenged his Chelsea side to show Saturday’s defeat by Everton was just a blip.
The 1-0 loss at Goodison Park ended a 17-match unbeaten run for the Blues that had pushed them firmly into the Premier League title picture.
Chelsea boss Lampard said: “I think the Premier League is unforgiving, you saw that with different results over the weekend. We see it pretty much every weekend or every matchday.
“We weren’t at our top level on Saturday and we got beaten. That’s it. We’ve been on a really long unbeaten run playing some really good football as well as winning games and we dropped our level for a game. It’s absolutely on us to pick it up again straight away.
“We’ve been moving in the direction we want but this is the Premier League and you don’t go to these clubs like Everton and expect anything.”
Lampard will think the same about Tuesday’s clash with Wolves at Molineux, and he sees consistency of performance as central to their ambitions.
“I kept saying when people were touting us as title contenders, after the Leeds game in particular, I’ve felt it’s a long race to win a Premier League,” said Lampard.
“I did it as a player, I understand lots of elements of it, and there are lots of difficult moments, and one of those is losing a game and trying to bounce back very quickly. And to sustain performance and sustain results over a period of time, particularly in busy periods like Christmas. It’s on us to try to do that.”
Chelsea will have Christian Pulisic available again after a hamstring problem, with Lampard saying: “He’s in the squad for tomorrow. It’s yet to be decided whether he starts or not but it’s obviously positive news from the weekend.”
Fellow wingers Hakim Ziyech and Callum Hudson-Odoi remain out as they continue to recover from their own hamstring injuries.
Lampard, meanwhile, expressed his disappointment at the likelihood of Chelsea having to return to playing matches behind closed doors.
With coronavirus cases rising in London, the capital is expected to be placed into tier three, meaning no supporters are allowed at sporting events.
Asked if he thought it would be difficult to go back to playing in an empty stadium, Lampard said: “I think it will be and I’m slightly disappointed. Even though we’re in tier two and we’ve had fans in for a game already, I do feel it should have been a level playing field.
“We’ve seen already and felt the backing they give you and what it does to the game.
“I also think – I’m not telling the Government what to do – that we can control 2,000 fans coming into the stadium if they’re coming from within that tier or however they want to do that to keep things moving along. It’s unfortunate to say the least.”
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