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Chelsea News: Former QPR manager Ian Holloway feels Frank Lampard is putting too much faith in youth 

20 Aug 2019, 18:54 IST

Reading v Chelsea - Pre-Season Friendly
Reading v Chelsea - Pre-Season Friendly

What's the story?

Former Premier League manager Ian Holloway has affirmed that new Chelsea boss, Frank Lampard, is putting too much faith in young players. The 56-year-old also believes the current squad does not have the right balance of experience and youth.

In case you didn't know...

Chelsea's youth players have a golden chance to prove themselves, now that Lampard has replaced Maurizio Sarri as manager at Stamford Bridge.

The former England international left his debut managerial post at Derby County to make his way back home at a time when the Blues were undergoing a bit of a crisis post Sarri's departure.

Not only did the London giants lose one of their best players in Eden Hazard this summer, but were also hit by a transfer ban that will span for two transfer windows.  

All this points to an identity change within the club under an inexperienced manager who is adamant on fielding young, inexperienced players. The Chelsea icon introduced his youth-centered manifesto to the world by giving crucial starts to the likes of Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham.

Lampard suffered a disappointing start to his debut Premier League campaign as manager after the Blues endured a 4-0 defeat at the hands of Manchester United. The Blues further lost the UEFA Super Cup to Liverpool and were held to a 1-1 draw by Leicester City over the weekend.

The heart of the matter

Holloway meanwhile, is not too impressed by Lampard's overwhelming focus on the youth players, having claimed that it is a part of the problem that he has faced so far this season.

Speaking to talkSPORT, he said, "The problem is the exciting young lads I wanted to see at Chelsea - Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Callum Hudson-Odoi – they’re injured."

"Frank has nailed his intentions to the mast [about giving youth a chance] and what’s very difficult is you need a blend of senior and young and inexperienced players."


"You need the enthusiasm of fearless legs running around everywhere, and we saw that at the start against Leicester, but you always need that game management."

"When you have an experienced fellow in your midfield area, like Kante, he was almost on his own when Jorginho went off. I was really surprised Jorginho went off and he left Mount there."

"Mount has done really well and I really like him, but hang on a minute, you’ve got to get your more experienced players on. If you look at his substitutions, he took off experienced players and left kids in there."

The former manager fears that overlooking experienced players in favor of young ones might backfire in the form of an ugly dispute between the two parties.

"I swear to you, in the end your experienced ones aren’t going to have that, they’re either going to want to leave or they will start falling out with the young ones and the manager," he added.

Halloway further highlighted the importance of getting the team's balance right, saying, "It’s about getting the blend right and they aren’t enough senior players, especially at the back. They’re missing Rudiger like you wouldn’t believe. They left too much grass in behind and another five minutes and Vardy would have scored."

"Chelsea aren’t what we want them to be because Frank can’t select from those great young players, like Loftus-Cheek and Hudson-Odoi, and it’s about getting that main team and the balance right."

What's next?

Chelsea, in search of their first win under Lampard, face Norwich City in the Premier League on Saturday.

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