LAMPARD WARNS ABRAHAM TO RESPECT THE RULES
Frank Lampard warned Tammy Abraham to respect the “rules” after the Chelsea striker argued with Cesar Azpilicueta over who should take a penalty in Saturday’s 4-0 thrashing of Crystal Palace.
With Chelsea leading 3-0 in the second half, Abraham wanted to take the Blues’ second penalty of the match instead of Jorginho, who is the team’s spot-kick expert and had already scored one just minutes earlier.
Abraham and Timo Werner discussed who should have it before Chelsea captain Azpilicueta intervened in a briefly heated debate.
He took the ball out of Abraham’s hands and gave it to Jorginho, prompting a dismissive wave from the striker.
But Jorginho scored again to prove Azpilicueta’s point before Chelsea boss Lampard made it clear to Abraham that he had been in the wrong.
“It’s been dealt with. I want leaders and I don’t mind a little bit of conflict. If Tammy wanted to take it because he wants a goal or whatever it was then he can get put in his place a little bit,” Lampard said.
“I appreciate his eagerness because his performance deserved a goal but the rules are you don’t jump up ahead of the list at any moment. So, dealt with.”
Abraham’s outburst, fuelled by his desire to score his first league goal this season, couldn’t overshadow Lampard’s pleasure as Chelsea got back on track.
Hampered by a heel injury, Ben Chilwell had a delayed start to his first season with Chelsea following his £50 million ($64 million) move from Leicester in August.
But the England left-back is making up for lost time after delivering an influential performance in his third game following a pair of League Cup outings.
While Lampard has invested in a host of attacking talent since the end of last season, here it was Chilwell efforts that broke down Palace’s stubborn defence at Stamford Bridge.
Chilwell’s thumping finish put Chelsea ahead soon after half-time and he provided the assist for Kurt Zouma’s header as the Blues doubled their lead.
Jorginho’s penalty double ensured Chelsea would bounce back from their midweek League Cup defeat against Tottenham and end a run of two successive league games without a win.
The defensive blunders that contributed to their 3-3 draw at West Bromwich Albion were erased and, crucially, Lampard’s men found their cutting edge against defensive opponents.
“Not too many put four past Crystal Palace. We just needed to up the urgency of our game. We needed to get Ben Chilwell into the game,” Lampard said.
We couldn’t allow Palace’s back four to say dealing with Chelsea’s front line was easy.
“Ben Chilwell was fantastic today. His ability to be so high up the pitch, and that’s not a bad thing, and his great quality on the ball.”
Lampard makes six changes to the side that fell three goals down at West Brom last weekend.
With the experienced Azpilicueta and Jorginho back in the starting line-up, Chelsea looked more stable and mature.
The first half followed a familiar pattern for Chelsea, who often dominated games without applying the knockout blow last season.
But this time they had the solution as the lively Chilwell finally broke the deadlock in the 50th minute.
Palace defender Mamadou Sakho made a hash of clearing Callum Hudson-Odoi’s cross and Azpilicueta hooked the ball to Abraham, whose determined header allowed Chilwell to fire home from six yards.
Chilwell was proving impossible for Palace to contain and he was catalyst for Chelsea’s second goal in the 66th minute.
Whipping a teasing cross into the Palace area from wide on the left, Chilwell found Zouma and the defender towered over Sakho to head home.
Chelsea were in control now and Jorginho made it three in the 78th minute when he slotted in a penalty after Abraham was fouled by Tyrick Mitchell.
Sakho conceded another penalty four minutes later and, after Abraham’s tantrum, Jorginho kept his focus to make it four.