Chelsea briefly moved to the top of the table after their 0-2 win over Newcastle. Federico Fernandez scored an own goal and Tammy Abraham added another one for the Blues to claim all three points. However, their stay at the top was only brief as Tottenham won 2-0 against Manchester City. After the win, the Englishman has told his players to stay humble.
Lampard is pleased where Chelsea are currently but insisted that the players have to stay focused. He said, “It’s pleasing, but I’m not gonna be excited about being top of the table for five minutes. I think it’s time to stay humble and know that it’s a long, long race“. The Blues missed a host of opportunities to kill the game before Abraham’s goal.
Timo Werner missed a few chances which he was expected to bury in. Newcastle United was completely on the backfoot in the first half as Chelsea dominated them possession-wise. There were only a few minutes where they tried to come out and attack the visitors in the first half.
However, in the second half, Steve Bruce’s side tried to express themselves more. They were far more adventurous in the second half. At one point in time, it did look like they could score and equalize. The Blues soaked in that pressure and Mendy had to make a few saves as well. Just when it was looking like they could in trouble, Chelsea hit the Magpies on the counter with Timo Werner’s pace was too much to handle for Newcastle’s defense and they doubled their lead.
Why Lampard has told his players to stay humble?
This summer Frank Lampard’s Chelsea were the biggest spenders in the transfer market. They spent more than $200 million and they signed seven new players. Chelsea did this to solve the issues they faced in their previous campaign. Last season, sometimes they would struggle to open up stubborn defense and their own defense would leak in goals. Kepa Arrizabalaga was even dropped for Willy Caballero.
Timo Werner came in to score goals, while Havertz and Ziyech were signed to open up stubborn defenses. Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell were signed to strengthen the defense. Mendy replaced the underperforming Kepa Arrizabalaga Thus the Blues were expected to do well as they have addressed all the issues they faced last season.
The results of the spending can be seen as well. In the past eight games, they have only conceded once scoring fifteen goals in all competitions. Thus there was talk about the Blues being title contenders. Not only this there is another factor why they are considered to be title contenders. Manchester City are yet to find consistency and Liverpool are going through injury crises.
These two reasons prompted some to suggest that Chelsea could challenge for the title. However, this is relatively a new squad. Lampard knows what it takes to win titles. He wants his team to be calm and focused so that they can focus on playing well rather than on the title talk. The Englishman doesn’t want this talk to get into the player’s head.
Can Chelsea really challenge for the title?
A large part of it would depend upon Liverpool and Manchester City. If Jurgen Klopp is able to guide his team through the injury crises then the Reds can challenge for the title. While Manchester City is also expected to find some consistency and get some momentum in the Premier League.
If by mid-December Liverpool and Manchester City are struggling then definitely the Blues will smell the title. However, it must be noted that they must be able to continue this good form. The likes of Tottenham and Leicester City are likely to be the teams who will pose a threat to the Blues.
A big test awaits both Tottenham and Chelsea, as Jose Mourinho will return to Stamford Bridge as a Spurs manager. A win for any of one of them will give them a big boost in their title aspirations. Whereas the Foxes should not be underestimated as well. In Brenden Rodgers, they have a manager who has been in a Premier League title race. They are likely to have learned a lesson from last season when they failed to finish in the top four.
Chelsea does have experienced players in Azpilicuetta, Silva, and Kante. The presence of these players in the dressing room will be crucial. A better picture will only come in December, till then only permutations and combinations can be made. On paper, Chelsea can definitely challenge for the title.