Paul Merson: Embarrassment of riches undermining Frank Lampard at Chelsea?

Paul Merson thinks a humiliation of riches could also be contributing to Frank Lampard’s struggles at Chelsea – however believes there’s nonetheless one essential space they should reinforce within the switch market.

Chelsea dropped to ninth within the Premier League after Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester City, which left them seven factors off the highest of the desk after a run of one win in six.

Lampard and his gamers have confronted criticism within the wake of the disjointed efficiency, and Merson believes the Chelsea boss’ struggles relaxation together with his failure to choose his favoured beginning line-up…

Does Lampard know his greatest workforce?

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“Chelsea are suffering from a major dip at the moment. Players are struggling, new signings are struggling, and four months into the season it appears that Frank Lampard does not know his best team,” Merson instructed Sky Sports.

“Frank has acquired to get a settled workforce. He is aware of his first-choice again 5 – Edouard Mendy, Reece James, Kurt Zouma, Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell – and that’s strong. After that, it is bingo and it is clear he doesn’t know his greatest midfield or entrance three.

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“You would argue that N’Golo Kante and Mason Mount are next in the pecking order but that leaves Lampard needing to select four from eight internationals. Suddenly things start to mount up, and it’s hard for him to pick the right team.”

Embarrassment of riches?

Merson added: “Last yr Chelsea had been below a switch embargo, and Lampard had a tough concept of what the workforce was. But typically you’ll be able to have too many choices. We see it with groups who chop and alter, week in, week out.

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“What you have got to remember is that Frank is an inexperienced manager, he’s not Carlo Ancelotti or Rafa Benitez, he’s new in the game and this is the best group of players he’s worked with.

“At the second it doesn’t appear to be there’s a plan, Chelsea appear to be a gaggle of prime gamers who’ve been instructed to only exit and play.

“Lampard went with the pace of Timo Werner, Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech against Manchester City but after the game he probably thought he should have gone with Olivier Giroud. That’s down to inexperience and learning.

“They have to ditch the 4-3-3, get Kai Havertz behind a entrance two, get two up entrance, play that approach and trigger groups issues, as a result of because it stands issues are predictable with Chelsea.”

Chelsea missing management

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Merson labelled points of Chelsea’s defeat to Manchester City amateurish and claimed it highlighted the membership’s want for management on the pitch.

“If you look at Southampton’s performance against Liverpool, they all looked like they knew what they were doing,” he added. “When one goes, they all go, when one holds, they all hold. It’s like clockwork regardless of the score or the stage of the game.

“Contrast that to how Chelsea collapsed in opposition to Manchester City. I used to be so shocked. Chelsea performed so nicely within the first half, acquired excited after which went behind. At that second they wanted somebody to calm issues down to remain within the sport for the subsequent quarter-hour, however they stored on enjoying, opened the sport up and had been punished.

“Something needs to click again with Chelsea because I don’t see a leader. Regardless of the instructions Lampard gave before the game, someone on the pitch has got to take responsibility.

“Kevin De Bruyne’s aim after Manchester City broke from a nook is the sort of aim you’d anticipate to see within the remaining minute of the cup tie if you end up dropping and go gung-ho for a late aim, not 34 minutes into the primary half of a match.

“It was unbelievable and the kind of thing you would not expect to see in an under-six football match. With the amount of talent Chelsea had on the field and on the bench, there was plenty of time left in the match for them to turn things around, but they shot themselves in the foot.”

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Can Lampard grasp man-management?

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Merson believes the success of Lampard’s tenure at Chelsea, and his capacity to rework their fortunes, may hinge on whether or not his man-management retains his gamers onside.

“I watched Lampard throughout his playing career, and he would give his all every week; it did not matter if Chelsea were two or three goals down, he would go to the end,” he mentioned.

“I am not being horrible, but these players he has got at Chelsea, while they may be of the same quality, they cannot match the grit and determination Frank Lampard showed in his career.

“He could must chew his tongue however, in the end, he has to simply accept that as a result of the identify of the sport now’s man-management, that is the primary factor. If your man-management is sweet, you might be all the time going to get an opportunity.

“All of these Chelsea players are internationals and can play the game, Frank isn’t going on the training pitch and teaching them a lot of new stuff. Man-management comes to the fore not with the results gained, but instead the manner in which he reacts to the game in the dressing room.

“If Frank goes into the dressing room all weapons blazing, these gamers are going to modify off. Man-management is the way you are available and react 5 minutes after a defeat, and whether or not the gamers settle for it and have your again, or the gamers say, ‘he’ll be gone, we cannot’.

“The hard thing for Frank is that he doesn’t have 11 Frank Lampards who will run through a brick wall.”

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Embarrassment of riches – however Chelsea have to strengthen

A recruitment drive through the summer season switch window noticed Chelsea spend £226.1m on gamers to prime the Premier League spending charts. Despite this, Merson believes there’s nonetheless one essential space that may be bolstered.

“I don’t know where Werner plays,” he mentioned. “I think Chelsea may have signed him to play as a striker, but that is not working, and if his best position is off the left, then Chelsea need a centre forward.

“No disrespect to Olivier Giroud or Tammy Abraham, however you aren’t going to win the Premier League with these as your entrance two.

“Giroud and Abraham do great on their day, but they are not going to be in the top six Premier League goalscorers this season, or any season. How many teams have won the Premier League without having a player in the top six scorers?”

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