I haven’t written a post in a while because I’ve been busy and in all honesty I am not bothered with a lot of recent events. I will post about my plans for my blogging in another post but for this post I want to talk about the Lampard situation. As many know, Frank Lampard has been a bedrock of the majority of Chelsea’s success after moving from West Ham for the 2001-2002 season. Recently there has been a lot of speculation as to what will happen given that he is 34 and his contract ends this summer.
On Twitter, people have been divided on how to feel about this. Some think he should stay like Giggs or Scholes are doing for Man U. Some say the fact that it’s even a topic of discussion is crazy. Here are the reasons I think we should just let this be sorted out amongst the parties that need to be involved:
Right now, we have no idea who the manager will be, what system they will use, etc. Lampard is 34 not 24. He doesn’t have time to feel out the position. This is not the strongest argument but one to consider.
2. Squad Development
Since winning the Champion’s League, I’ve seen the team as constantly in search of it’s new direction. Big progress was made in bringing Oscar and Hazard in to form the infamous Mazacar attacking three with our little magician Juan Mata. There are many midfielders also looking to break in such as Oriol Romeu, Josh McEachran, John Obi Mikel (who is still fairly young) and sometimes David Luiz in deeper positions and Kevin DeBruyne and Marko Marin fighting for those attacking spots. These are all young players who need to feel the same trials and tribulations Lampard did to get where he is today. Lampard could settle on a bit role but that brings me to my last point.
3. What Lampard Wants
At the end of the day, he has done more than enough for the club. I think that first and foremost he must assess his priorities. He is very capable of playing top flight football until retirement. He has an eye for the game that will not go with age. However, he will have wages he or his agent may want considering his potential at other clubs. If he wants a potential bit role on reduced wages because he loves the club then it should be allowed but there shouldn’t be any disrespect in him leaving to say go to the MLS where he will still get wages and a solid fan base.
As I always say though, this decision doesn’t involve us in the least bit so forgo instant anger at rumors and just let whatever happens happens.
Everyone watching the Premier League is aware of the animosity many Chelsea fans have towards Rafa Benitez, the current interim manager. I don’t happen to be one of these people. He isn’t my favorite manager but I respect what he does just as I respect Sir Alex Ferguson for what he does. RB is at Chelsea now and even though the Club World Cup is not ours, I think he is doing some much needed tinkering. Here are the top positives I have taken so far.
Many think it’s pretty obvious that the reason Benitez is here is to make Torres score. With 13 goals all competition and 7 Premier League goals (13 being the top amount), Torres is in what would be called good form now. He also has a lot of responsibility by being basically the only striker. I believe that as mentioned during today’s match, part of what has helped Torres is that the pressure has been taken off of him a bit because of the animosity towards Benitez. Torres has been allowed to just play, take chances, miss then score like any other forward. This is the ideal time to go and buy another striker because it would only lighten the load so Torres not scoring one match doesn’t hurt the squad. Whatever Benitez has done or said has restored much needed confidence in Torres.
2. David Luiz
I won’t go too much into this since I have an article on this topic but Luiz as a midfielder is good for multiple reasons. In today’s match, Luiz lost the ball a couple times. When he was a defender, that meant we were exposed if Mikel isn’t there to hold and cover for Luiz. With Luiz in midfield, there are still two center backs. It allows him to be as expressive and active as he is naturally likely to be.
The defending problem is definitely linked to the Luiz problem with Terry being out but I definitely think the whole mentality has changed. I don’t know the stats but I bet at least half the goals conceded this season involved a winger crossing the ball to around the penalty spot where a center back or defensive mid should have been only to be put in by and unmarked attacker. We will see in coming matches but this seems to have stopped which has naturally led to less goals being conceded.
As to the future, I hope we can bring on board a striker to help Torres out up top, especially with Sturridge heading to Liverpool. I personally think the squad doesn’t need a lot of improvement playerwise.
In the wake of the recent shooting in Newton, Connecticut, there has been a lot of debate and such about movement to reform gun laws. I have come across an article that I believe raises some good points and sentiments that many may hold. Worth a look.
This is another article from a different perspective on the issue saying that it may be too late to simply enforce gun bans.
Today’s match against Monterrey was a first for Brazilian center back David Luiz at the defensive midfield position alongside Mikel. From his first couple of matches, many have considered Luiz a liability as a defender because he gets too into moving up with the play and reckless tackles. His first year or more at Chelsea, Luiz garnered a lot criticism. The epitome of this was former Manchester United player and current pundit Gary Neville’s “Playstation controller” remarks last November. Around Chelsea’s Champion’s League turnaround last year, Luiz put in performances that merited articles such as this one. It showed progress in his defender role.
Yesterday in this Guardian article, Luiz alluded to the possibility that he could play any role the team called for. With Romeu and Ramires out and Benitez obviously being aware of Luiz’s skills, this was the ideal time to test what has been just a strategy of FIFA matches: Luiz as CDM. The overwhelming reaction from fans and neutrals is that he was impressive. Hopefully we will so more if this in matches to come.