Chelsea’s final pre-season game against Borussia Monchengladbach was a chance for Lampard to field the majority of the starting XI that will play against Man UTD. The opposition were of a good level and probably gave us our toughest test of pre-season as we get closer to the opening day of the season.
Monchengladbach started the better side and probably were for the majority of the first half, as they went into half time 2-0 up. It was a very poor showing, especially defensively. The second goal was caused by Kovacic not tracking his man properly, something which Kante surely would have dealt with, and his introduction with about 20 minutes to go was a welcome sight for all Chelsea fans. Whether he’ll be fit enough to start at Old Trafford is questionable.
The defence was a big issue today, as it has been throughout all of the games under Lampard, as we went two goals down, with penalties from Abraham and Barkley salvaging a draw. There doesn’t seem to be a first choice CB pairing yet, but going off of today’s performance, I would assume it will be Christensen partnering David Luiz at Old Trafford.
Despite the loss of Eden Hazard, creating chances hasn’t been an issue, especially in the latter stages of pre-season when fitness has improved. The finishing has though, and good chances were presented to Pulisic, Abraham, Mount and Barkley in open play, all of whom failed to beat the impressive Sommer. That will need to improve for next Sunday’s game against Man UTD.
Here are some of the key points we can take from pre-season as a whole…
- A lot of work is needed defensively
- 4-2-3-1 seems to be the chosen formation
- Creating chances isn’t a problem
- Finishing needs to improve
- Be patient
It’s not been a perfect set of performances but pre-season rarely is. Lampard now has a week to work with the team to improve and get them ready for a tough start to the campaign which includes a trip to Old Trafford, the UEFA Super Cup against Liverpool and hosting Leicester in Lampard’s first game at Stamford Bridge, all within 8 days.
This season won’t be easy, but it won’t be boring.