Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says he’s “far more excited” about Callum Hudson-Odoi poaching goals in the six-yard box than scoring 35-yard screamers.
The young England international has come under pressure this season for some uninspiring performances, despite only recently recovering from a serious Achilles injury.
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- Hudson-Odoi notched four goals and three assists across league and European competition last season.
- His form helped him break into Gareth Southgate’s senior England set-up.
- But the winger suffered an Achilles injury towards the end of the 2018/19 campaign and has struggled for form this season.
- However, Hudson-Odoi bagged his second goal in two games during Chelsea’s 3-0 win over Burnley.
- And Lampard was thrilled with the nature of his goal, getting into position to poach in the six-yard box.
However, he followed up his first goal of the season against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup with another strike in Chelsea’s 3-0 Premier League win over Burnley on Saturday, sweeping home just after half-time to put the Blues out of sight.
It was hardly a goal of the month contender, but Lampard was certainly pleased with Hudson-Odoi’s endeavour to be in the right place at the right time – a quality the Chelsea manager feels is vital to him becoming a “serious player” for the club.
“For Callum to score in the six-yard box is far more exciting for me than for him to score from 35 yards, without a doubt. Because it means that he’s prepared to run the extra bit to sprint in there,” Lampard told reporters after the match.
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“And that wasn’t the only time he did it, he did it on one of the early chances we had in the first half. He was doing it, recovering, going higher up the pitch at the right times.
“And his overall performance was an absolute statement for Callum of what he needs to do. That was the real Callum Hudson-Odoi and what he can be, because there’s obviously more to come.
“But I thought his goal was brilliant for him, and if he can carry on doing that, then it’s a serious player we have in Callum.”
Lampard: I hope Abraham is upset
Fellow youngster Tammy Abraham netted Chelsea’s second goal of the game, extending his impressive record this season to 13 strikes in 21 Premier League appearances.
However, that goal was just one of four shots the 22-year-old managed throughout the match and despite showing his pleasure in Abraham’s performance, Lampard did call upon the striker to improve his ruthlessness in front of goal.
“I hope he’s upset tonight because he should have had two or three. I know he’s like that but at the same time, he got his goal,” Lampard added. “He keeps getting in there, with his energy and personality on the pitch. He was that all-round striker.
“And the next stage is can you be that more clinical, but I’m delighted with Tammy.”