Lampard is doing the impossible at Chelsea, says Robbie Savage.

The Blues are more exciting to watch without Eden Hazard.


Robbie Savage has heaped praise on Frank Lampard, saying he “is doing what nobody thought was possible at Chelsea.


The BT Sport pundit is convinced the west London side “are better to watch without Eden Hazard” - who left for Real Madrid in the summer transfer window.


After enduring a stuttering start to the season, Chelsea have now won six consecutive games in all competitions and are fourth in the Premier League standings ahead of their crunch clash against Burnley on Saturday.


“Frank Lampard is doing what nobody thought was possible – he is making Chelsea better to watch without Eden Hazard,” Savage wrote in his Mirror Sport column.


“When Lampard took over in the summer, under a transfer embargo and after Hazard's £100 million move to Real Madrid, the popular consensus was that Chelsea would struggle to finish in the top four. But he has already turned them into the most watchable side in the Premier League behind Liverpool and Manchester City.


“And a year after he brought Derby to Stamford Bridge in the League Cup, and narrowly went down 3-2, Lampard is in danger of turning Chelsea into everybody's second-favourite team – like Leicester four years ago – by promoting the virtues of youth.


“He has not been afraid to adapt by playing different systems, from 4-3-3 to 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-2-1 and even when Chelsea lost 4-0 at Old Trafford on the opening weekend, it would have been a very different story if Tammy Abraham's shot had gone in, and not hit the post, at 0-0.


“Nobody is better-qualified to encourage youngsters to maximise their potential than Lampard. As a teenager at West Ham, he always stayed behind for extra training, extra shooting practice and, even if he wasn't the most naturally-gifted player, he drained every last drop of ability through sheer endeavour.


“Young lads coming through the system at Chelsea can look up to him as a role model for hard work reaping its rewards. I like the way he was brave enough to stick by Abraham when he missed a few chances earlier in the season and Olivier Giroud, a World Cup winner, was waiting in the wings.


“I like the way he has put an arm round Christian Pulisic, telling the £58 million winger his chance would come if he worked hard, and has been as good as his word.


“And I like the way he has been fearless in his promotion of youth. In Amsterdam, for instance, Callum Hudson-Odoi was the youngest Chelsea player to start a Champions League match since Josh McEachran in 2010.


“Now his team is brimming with the verve and energy of Abraham, Hudson-Odoi, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori.


“Suddenly, a team whose only academy graduate for 20 years was John Terry is full of kids – and that's a fantastic lookout for the future health of English football.


“I thought it was going to be a huge ask for Chelsea to finish in the top four while under a transfer embargo – but look at them now.


“They are only two points behind Manchester City in the Premier League, they are well on course to reach the Champions League knockout phase and this crop of young lads has the aura of Manchester United's famous Class of 92.


“These youngsters already have a winning mentality because they have won he FA Youth Cup seven times in 10 years, and they are linking up with World Cup winners like Giroud, N'golo Kante and Pedro.“


Savage insisted that Lampard has shown clubs don’t need to spend a lot of funds to “turn promise” into points. 


“And they are doing all this after losing Hazard, their best player last season by a distance, in the summer.


“Look at what's happened to Real Madrid since Cristiano Ronaldo left. They are nowhere near the force of old.


“But Lampard has absorbed the blow of Hazard leaving – and turned it to his advantage by giving Chelsea's youngsters a platform to shine.


“At some point, they will probably go through a sticky patch this winter because consistency only comes with experience, but rival big clubs must be looking at Lampard's fine start and simmering with envy.


“In the past, there has probably been an element of bitterness and jealousy at Chelsea's spending power when money was no object for owner Roman Abramovich.


“But Lampard has shown you don't need to spend £200 million in a single transfer window to turn promise into league points.”



        Advertise With Us