Former Chelsea boss Glenn Hoddle says he can see Frank Lampard developing as a manager this season.
Hoddle has been impressed by Lampard’s Chelsea both in the Champions League and Premier League action this term – not the least the way he has his team playing.
On the back of a 4-0 Champions League rout of Sevilla in Spain last week, Chelsea were impressive for victory over Leeds United on Saturday.
Speaking on his podcast, ‘The Glenn Hoddle Footy Show’, Hoddle said: “I think Frank’s learned a lot and he’s learned quickly. He has his team expressing themselves in a different way to say Jose (Mourinho, Tottenham manager). They had a problem with conceding goals… you thought they’d have to score three goals to win a game, but they’ve put that to bed.
“They’re a team now playing free-flowing football, but they also have the defensive balance right.
“That’s a really exciting squad they’ve put together which is only going to get better as those youngsters gel and play longer together – and Frank has that time with them.
“I love watching Chelsea play, I think they have the balance right.”
Hoddle says the improvements of the team are in no small way down to Lampard and his team selection. But also key has been the decision to act quickly and sign Edouard Mendy from Rennes over the summer.
The former England coach continued: “He’s bought a goalkeeper. As soon as he (Mendy) came in there was a real confidence amongst the back four. They knew they had a confident goalkeeper behind them. Kepa was throwing a few goals in and wasn’t giving much confidence to his defence.
“But for me, (N’Golo) Kante is playing in the right position. A lot of the (opposition) attacks are being stopped because the lad is being played in his right position. He reads the game so well, intercepting balls and he uses the ball nice, simply and quickly. That’s a major asset.
“They’re now pressing as a team. It looked a bit half-hearted before. But now they press as a team and that can only have happened after talking about it and the work of Frank and Jody Morris on the training field. They could only do it by demanding it, yet they’ve still managed to be free-flowing.”
Chelsea currently sit third on the table, two points behind joint leaders Liverpool and Tottenham after 11 games played. The Blues meet Krasnodar in the Champions League having already qualified for the round of 16.