Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has hailed his side’s win over Ajax as providing a blueprint for the future.
The Blues beat last season’s semi-finalists 1-0 at the Johan Cruyff ArenA on Wednesday night, with Michy Batshuayi scoring the first goal Ajax had conceded in the Champions League group stage this year.
Chelsea’s “blueprint” win: Five things to know…
- Chelsea beat Ajax 1-0 on Wednesday evening to top their Champions League group.
- The Blues were the first team to beat Ajax in all competitions this season.
- Michy Batshuayi scored the only goal of the game in the 86th minute.
- Frank Lampard hailed Chelsea’s all-round performance, calling it the “blueprint”.
- Chelsea have now won their last six games across all competitions..
It drew Chelsea level with Ajax on six points in Group H, with the Blues top of the table owing to a better head-to-head record. The win also took Chelsea’s winning run to six games across all competitions, helping Lampard’s men overcome what had been a testing start to the 2019/20 campaign.
And Lampard, who replaced Maurizio Sarri in the summer, believes Chelsea’s win provided a blueprint from which they can build with no excuses for regression.
“It feels huge, which always scares me because there is a lot to do,” he told reporters after the match.
“It is six points halfway through a group now and we play Burnley on Saturday. I think we are entitled to be happy tonight with the way we played.
“It is a bit of a blueprint for us in terms of the way we played. The work of the midfield players was excellent.
“The work of the wingers, the work of the full backs getting out to players, top, top players, and stopping them from making passes and easy decisions was outstanding. I could go through them all.
“Kurt Zouma, wow, what a performance. That is the blueprint. No excuses now to dip from that.”
Chelsea now turn their attention to Burnley on Saturday evening with the Blues looking to consolidate their place in the Premier League’s top four.
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Zouma: Chelsea still a big club
Zouma, who was praised by Lampard, has also overcome a slow personal start to the season having looked defensively weak in the opening few games to become an integral part of the Blues backline.
Lining up alongside Fikayo Tomori on Wednesday, Zouma helped Chelsea keep just their third clean sheet of the season, and second in a row.
And Zouma believes the win over Ajax has reminded others that Chelsea remain a big club, despite the youth of their squad and transition period.
“I don’t know if it’s a special win or not but we’re just happy with the three points,’ he said.
“We’re a dangerous team to play and that’s what we want to show people.
“We wanted to send a message to everybody that Chelsea is still here, we’re still a big club and a big team.
“Even if we’re young, we can see the players we have are very talented – we just want to win the most games that we can and see what happens.”