Jose Mourinho believes Frank Lampard should use Chelsea’s transfer ban to his advantage and finally tap into the club’s academy.
The Blues are banned from signing new players for two transfer windows and lost Eden Hazard to Real Madrid earlier this summer.
Can Chelsea’s “loan army” save them? Five things to know…
- Lampard replaced Sarri as Chelsea manager this summer.
- The Blues are banned from signing players for two transfer windows.
- They also lost Eden Hazard to Real Madrid.
- But Chelsea’s returning loan army could help thicken out their squad.
- Mourinho thinks Kurt Zouma and Tammy Abraham could play roles this term.
In recent years, Chelsea have become renowned for producing talented youngsters, only for their path to the first team to be blocked after years of heading out on loan.
But Mourinho, who won three Premier League titles across two managerial spells at Chelsea, believes his former player Frank Lampard can use the likes of Kurt Zouma and Tammy Abraham as new signings after their loan returns.
“It depends on what you have in the academy, that’s the point,” Mourinho told Sky Sports. “I think every manager in the world loves to play kids from the academy.
“The question is: what is the product from the academy? What can you work with to improve?
“I think Chelsea is a very special club in relation to that. I just give an example: Chelsea needs a centre-back – Kurt Zouma! You don’t need to buy, you don’t need to spend. Zouma!
“He’s champion of England, he played for Chelsea, played for Stoke in the Premier League, played for Everton in the Premier League, played for France. He’s your player, he’s on loan, where are you going to buy a better player than him? You already have him.
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“You want a young striker – Tammy Abraham! He’s yours. He knows the club. He was made at the club, he was educated at the club. He was on loan, he played already some matches in the Premier League, he plays in the Championship but Championship at the highest level with the responsibility to play at a big club like Aston Villa. He’s ready.
“Do you need to buy a young centre forward? No! And Chelsea were criticised many times with the number of players they had on loan, more than 30 players, 40 players, but now the moment arrived and they have answers like nobody else could have.
“They have the answers, so I don’t think it’s any problem for them. The only problem for them is obvious which is that they lost a phenomenal player. Eden Hazard was a special player for Chelsea and they lost him, apart from that I don’t see any problem for them.”
“I’m not going to say Lampard will be phenomenal”
Despite the immense level of success Mourinho and Lampard enjoyed together at Stamford Bridge, the Portuguese tactician refused to be drawn on whether he thought the former midfielder would be a huge managerial success.
Mourinho admitted Lampard has potential but “time will tell” whether or not he has what it takes in the dugout.
“You know, time will see,” Mourinho said. “Only time. It would be nice and easy for me to say, because I love him, that he’s going to be a phenomenal manager.
“It would be very nice for me to say, but I’m not going to say that, and I cannot also say I don’t believe he’s going to do it, because that’s not the way I feel.
“I feel that he has a potential, I feel that he loves, which is a very important thing, he loves – that’s the reason why he is there – and I wish him the best but only time can speak and in a few years we will see.”