Frank Lampard has earned plenty of praise since taking over as Chelsea manager – and rightly so.
The 41-year-old has not shied away from the challenge of inheriting a young and experienced squad at Stamford Bridge, despite the obvious problems stemming from the club’s inability to sign new players.
Just as he did in the early stages of his tenure at Derby, Lampard has proven himself to be willing to embrace change. He is a coach who prides himself on being adaptable and capable of tweaking his tactics if an in-game situation requires him to.
When he spots a potential problem, he looks to address it. And that is exactly what he has done in recent weeks by switching to a three-man defensive system in response to Chelsea’s indifferent defensive record.
The trio of Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen and Fikayo Tomori were called upon for the victory over Wolves, with the latter relishing an opportunity to push forward, which led to him scoring an absolute piledriver.
Kurt Zouma came into the side for Rudiger against Valencia but poor set-piece marking – and Ross Barkley’s awful penalty – cost the Blues as they suffered a 1-0 defeat to the La Liga outfit.
So, with the jury still out on Lampard’s decision to switch to a new system, will he stick to his guns for the visit of Premier League leaders Liverpool this weekend?
Chelsea’s defenders have settled into the formation well, but containing the likes of Mohamed Salah and Co is likely to be a completely different kettle of fish.
Meanwhile, reverting to a back four may offer Kepa Arrizabalaga some additional cover in goal but doing so will surely restrict Chelsea’s hopes of getting the better of Jurgen Klopp’s full-backs. Lampard has his work cut out if he’s going to find a solution.
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