Frank Lampard to integrate Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech to Chelsea training
The duo is set to move to Stamford Bridge after Chelsea beat off rivals to the highly coveted duo. They will, however, be ineligible to take part in our remaining fixtures this season. The earliest they can don their blue jersey is next season.
As Liverpool and Manchester City have shown over the last two seasons, every point matters in the English Premier League. It is imperative that we ensure that the duo hit the ground running.
Bring incorporated into the training sessions will clearly help achieve that goal. With a lot still to be played for, our players will also benefit from going up against these world-class stars.
Ziyech has not played since the Dutch league was cancelled. Ensuring that he is up to speed when it comes to match fitness is of utmost importance.
Lampard said (h/t Independent):
“We will formulate a plan for them that will look slightly different individually.”
“Whether that means mixing with the squad or whether that means some physical work in the shorter term for themselves.”
The Blues wasted no time in securing two of the sought after players in European football. This infusion of fresh blood will give us the edge over our rivals while it will also help us close the gap to the top.
Lampard understands the importance of getting the duo up to speed. He is keen to ensure that fitness and freshness levels for next season are attained.
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By easing the duo into the Chelsea system, we will steal a march on our rivals. By the time next season rolls around, both Werner and Ziyech will already be familiar with the way we play.
The fact that we can get the bedding-in period out of the way should give us a competitive advantage on the pitch.
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Preview, Prediction and stats
Chelsea will be aiming to register back-to-back league wins when they face arch-rivals Arsenal on the road on Boxing Day.
The Blues recently lost their way with successive defeats to Wolverhampton Wanderers and Everton, but they managed to end the streak with a 3-0 triumph over West Ham United on Monday.
With the victory, they have jumped to fifth on the table with 25 points, just one adrift of fourth-placed Everton. Elsewhere, they are six points behind league leaders Liverpool.
Meanwhile, the Gunners are going through their worst ever start to a Premier League season and they are down in the 15th position with just 14 points on the board.
Mikel Arteta’s side are winless in the past seven league matches where they have picked up just two points and as our friends at the Chelsea Blog have highlighted, the Blues have the chance to pile more misery by beating them in a one-sided derby at the Emirates Stadium.
Frank Lampard’s side registered a 2-1 comeback win over Arsenal at the Emirates last year. It was their first victory against the Gunners away from home since January 2016.
Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored three goals in his previous two meetings against Chelsea and that includes a match-winning brace in the 2019/2020 FA Cup final.
The last league encounter between the sides finished 2-2 at Stamford Bridge. The Gunners, who were down to 10 men, came twice from behind to share the spoils.
Willian will be facing his former employers Chelsea for the first time since his summer exit. The Brazilian has failed to score in his 19 derby appearances involving the clubs, but has three assists to his name.
First-choice full-backs Reece James and Ben Chilwell are doubtful for the derby as they are nursing minor knee problems. Elsewhere, Lampard has already ruled out Hakim Ziyech as he has yet to recover from his hamstring concern.
The Gunners are definitely without Thomas Partey, who is nursing a thigh injury. Elsewhere, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is doubtful with a calf issue while Gabriel Martinelli may also be assessed after a kick on his shin. Granit Xhaka is, however, back after serving a three-game domestic ban.
Chelsea (4-3-3): Edouard Mendy; Cesar Azpilicueta, Kurt Zouma, Thiago Silva, Emerson Palmieri; N’Golo Kante, Mason Mount, Jorginho; Timo Werner, Tammy Abraham, Christian Pulisic
Arsenal (3-4-3): Bernd Leno; Rob Holding, Gabriel Magalhaes, Kieran Tierney; Hector Bellerin, Mohamed Elneny, Granit Xhaka, Bukayo Saka; Nicolas Pepe, Alexandre Lacazette, Willian
The Gunners have struggled to find the back of the net and they have netted just 12 goals from 14 games. The Blues, on the other hand, have had no such concerns and they are the league’s second-highest scorers with 29 goals.
With just three goals in the previous seven league games, the Gunners have lacked the cutting edge in the final third and they could be up for another tough encounter with Aubameyang also facing a race to get fit for the derby.
Arsenal 0-2 Chelsea
Stats from Transfermarkt.com and 11v11.com
Lampard issues injury update on three Chelsea stars ahead of derby vs Arsenal
Team News: Lampard issues injury update on 3 first-team stars ahead of Arsenal clash
Speaking ahead of the weekend derby vs Arsenal, Frank Lampard provided an update on the team news that Chelsea will be without three of their first-team stars against Arsenal due to injury.
Chelsea face rivals Arsenal on Boxing Day in the Premier League. The Blues’ return to winning ways in the league after a win against West Ham United on Monday was dampened by Ben Chilwell’s injury.
The left-back had to be substituted just 10 minutes after coming on due to an ankle injury. The £45million summer signing started in 10 consecutive league games before the win against West Ham.
He is joined on the sidelines by another English full-back, Reece James. The 21-year-old is recovering from a knee injury and will also not be in the squad against Arsenal.
“They’re both doubtful. We’re not sure whether they will be fit for either game.”
Ziyech adds to the injury trouble
Lampard’s troubles are compounded by the fact that Hakim Ziyech is also ruled out with a thigh injury for the clash.
“No, he [Ziyech] won’t be fit for Arsenal. He had a knee injury at the start of the season and he now has a muscle injury.”
Lampard did add a positive touch to the news by saying he expects the Moroccan to come back next week and continue offering “great things” to the team.
The injury to the full-backs comes as a blow for the Chelsea boss. Lampard earlier expressed his hopes of having the duo involved in the matches around the Christmas period.
Luckily for the Blues, the team is not devoid of quality on the bench. While James and Chilwell will be a huge miss, other players in the squad have proven capable enough to step in when needed.
Lampard’s men will be looking to reclaim a top-4 spot this week but cannot afford to be callous against Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal.
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Even though Arsenal are winless in their last 7 league games, the stakes in the derby are always high and the form-book usually goes out of the window in such matches.
New Fluminense manager interested in signing ex-teammate and current Chelsea star
Thiago Silva invited to join Fluminense by his former teammate
As reported by Globo Esporte (h/t football.london), Marcao revealed in a press conference that he is keen to bring in Thiago Silva to Fluminense.
Marcao is the newly appointed manager of top-flight Brazilian club Fluminense, taking over from Odair Hellman.
Thiago Silva is a product of Fluminense’s youth academy and was a vital member of their squad before he left in 2009 to join AC Milan. (h/t football.london)
Marcao was Thiago Silva’s teammate when the Brazilian centre-back was at Fluminense, and now the newly appointed Flu manager says he wants Thiago Silva back at the club.
The Brazilian manager revealed at the press conference that the two regularly exchanged messages and there is a “lot of love” between them.
He brought up a textual conversation with the Chelsea defender where he recalls asking the 36-year-old to join Fluminense.
“…come to play here, come to help us, you’ll be very welcome”.
However, Thiago Silva has adjusted well in the Premier League. He is a central figure in Frank Lampard’s side that sits third in the league and are unbeaten in Europe.
Silva has featured in 11 matches for Chelsea this season. In those games, the Blues have kept 7 clean sheets and not lost any of them. (h/t transfermarkt)
Although Silva’s current contract runs out in the summer of 2021, he stated to French outlet L’Equipe that he would be looking to extend it if the offer arrives. (h/t football.london)
“I hope to continue to play well and that my contract will be renewed.”
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The 36-year-old veteran would be hoping to feature in his 8th Premier League game this season as Chelsea travel to Goodison Park on Saturday.
A win would mean Chelsea will be top until at least Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool play their league games.
Out-of-contract Chelsea star closing in on a move to arch-rivals
Arsenal closing in on veteran star Willian
The Brazilian has been a faithful servant to the club for seven years. He has played under five different managers, occupying a key role under all of them.
With his current contract running out, Willian is yet to pen new terms, which had led to speculation regarding his future.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is keen to keep the 31-year-old. Although there were reports of the club reaching a breakthrough in negotiations, it is yet to translate into a contract.
The main contention between the player and the club is the duration of his contract. Willian wants a new three-year deal while Chelsea are only ready to offer two years.
His situation has attracted the attention of Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal. The latter now appears to be in pole position to sign him.
Willian had revealed that he and his family would like to remain in London. Arsenal certainly gives him the chance to do so. More so, the Gunners are looking to rebuild and could do with an experienced head such as the 31-year-old.
The player, however, is aware of the consequences of joining a rival. With more than 300 first-team games for Chelsea, Willian could risk damaging his legacy if he moves to North London.
Willian was brought t the club by Jose Mourinho and has since proved himself to be a key player for us. He has since made 339 appearances, scoring 63 goals and assisting 62.
He still has a few years left in him and has the potential to be an excellent mentor to some of our younger players. The club will do well to retain the winger than let him go to a direct rival.
It was confirmed by the player’s agent that his client will make a decision on his future after the FA Cup final against Arsenal.
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Willian started off with a bang after the restart. His goals were crucial in Chelsea’s efforts to qualify for the Champions League.
If anything, he has proven to his detractors that he is not past his best. It now remains to be seen where his future lies.
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