After a relatively mixed start to the season, Chelsea appear to have gotten back to winning ways and have put together an impressive run of games. New signing Edouard Mendy has made his presence felt in goal, and has managed to keep five successive shut outs across all competitions, making him the first keeper since Petr Cech ten years ago to do so.
His form has come as a timely boost to Chelsea who were struggling at the back at the start of the campaign. Thiago Silva's inclusion in the first XI has also made a massive difference to their defensive solidity, as the Brazilian has contributed to three Premier League clean sheets in all three of his starts during the month of October. After UEFA Champions League duties in midweek, they return to Premier League action, albeit with a few injury concerns.
Frank Lampard opens up on Timo Werner workload
Timo Werner has featured regularly for Chelsea since his big-money move from Germany. At Turf Moor, he was called upon as a late change to replace Christian Pulisic in the starting XI due to an injury to the American international (more on him later). Speaking on Werner, Lampard said;
"It was clear with the Burnley game that I was planning on giving him [Timo Werner] a rest, more because I had options and because of the journey to Russia and back."
"Timo has had a lot of games but at the minute there is always a balance in my job with players who are playing well and enjoying it and finding their way in the team and making relationships, and feeling the league if they are new to it. That has been a big deal for Timo as well so I have to be happy with that."
"I am not talking about tomorrow [against Sheffield United] necessarily, I am not going to give the team away, but as we look forward I will try to manage those minutes to keep him as fresh as I can but at the moment he is going well so we will see."
Manager confirms Chelsea star Pulisic out of Sheffield clash
As mentioned above, Christian Pulisic had to pull out of the starting XI due to an injury, which Lampard confirmed will keep him out of the side for their clash on Saturday.
Speaking on the Chelsea star, the Englishman said;
"[Christian Pulisic is] Not fit to play, still suffering with his hamstring. He's not training at the moment. He trained at a low level in midweek and wasn't comfortable. We have to keep looking for the right solution."
The winger could be set to face another spell on the sidelines after picking up this injury.
Havertz in self-isolation, Kepa in contention
Star summer signing Kai Havertz has recently tested positive for COVID-19, due to which he is in self-isolation, as confirmed by the Chelsea boss. On the other hand, Kepa Arrizabalaga has recovered from an injury, and could be in contention for their upcoming fixture. Speaking on paid, Lampard confirmed;
"Kepa has recovered. He still is getting a slight bit of pain but he is in the squad for tomorrow."
"I don't know that [Havertz's availability for international duty]. With Kai, we must wait until he is symptom-free first of all and then he will have to have a negative test, so at the moment that is not decided, that is not clear."
Given Mendy's superb form, it appears unlikely that the Spaniard will feature for Chelsea tomorrow.
Published 07 Nov 2020, 05:20 IST