Frank Lampard became the first English manager to lose 10 successive games in charge of a top-flight club for 35 years on Tuesday, as his Chelsea side succumbed 3-1 at Arsenal.
Chelsea’s all-time leading goalscorer has lost all six of his matches since returning to become interim manager in the wake of Graham Potter’s sacking.
Lampard looked aghast on the touchline as Arsenal took advantage of Chelsea’s flimsy defending to go 3-0 up after 34 minutes. While the second half was marginally better, the scale of the job Chelsea’s next permanent manager faces was spelt out by Lampard in his post-match assessment.
“From what this season tells you, from start to finish, we have to find the reasons quickly,” he said. “It’s not an overnight fix. The main answer is simple. We have to do the basics better and then we’ll get some progress.”
It is easy to feel some sympathy for 44-year-old Lampard who has now won only one of his last 20 games as a manager. Too many of Chelsea’s expensively-assembled squad are under-performing and fans are openly questioning the commitment of some of them — a criticism refuted by Lampard.
“The players care, trust me. Chelsea fans may talk about players not caring but I don’t believe it,” he added.
“The lads want to do well but have to understand what that means every day, from training on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. How you prepare, maintain yourself. “There can be a lot of reasons and some are very valid — players coming into the Premier League into a team that is having a difficult moment, it is not easy, this is the hardest league in the world.” Reuters