Chelsea 0-2 Southampton: Frank Lampard’s men were beaten once again by a side struggling for points in the Premier League this season. Chelsea were outplayed by Southampton at home and the Saints walked away with all three points.
The young manager is still learning things but has been making mistakes often. There are a lot of things that he has got to learn but avoiding basic mistakes has to be the first thing on his mind now.
Here are 3 mistakes Frank Lampard made in Chelsea 0-2 Southampton:
#1 – Formation
Starting off with the first thing. 3-4-3 worked like a charm against Tottenham Hotspur on the weekend but it wasn’t the right formation to use against Southampton. Against a side that was bound to sit deep and defend, 3 at the back was not required.
Lampard should have gone back to his 4-3-3 attacking formation and things might have been a lot better. The control in the midfield was lacking and that was mainly because Emerson, Azpilicueta, Willian and Callum Hudson-Odoi were not supporting Jorginho and Kante.
Tammy Abraham as the one dropping deep to help out the midfielder and that left the Southampton defenders free to mark the Chelsea wingers as there was no one in front of their goal!
#2 – Player selection
Kovacic was suspended, Reece James was injured and Mount needed some rest. But still, there were a lot of better options Frank Lampard could have gone with.
Hudson-Odoi has not been at his best and should be slowly getting back into the team. Starting him instead of Pulisic was a mistake that proved costly.
At the same time, with Lampard going with a 3-4-3 formation, dropping Marcos Alonso for Emerson made little sense. The Spaniard is a great wing-back and unless Lampard had already decided to switch back to 4-3-3 in the middle of the game, it did not make sense.
Similarly, Chelsea need to act quick and get Timo Werner or another striker in January as the burden on Tammy Abraham is too much right now. He needs a break but with the next best option being Michy Batshuayi, Lampard cannot afford to drop him either.
#1 – Timing and substitutions
Mason Mount came on at half-time for Kurt Zouma and that was a smart move. The timing was perfect for that as well but with the other two, he took too long.
It was only in the 67th minute that Callum Hudson-Odi was taken off for Christian Pulisic. Even though the young Englishman was not doing anything great, the move should have seen N’Golo Kante leaving and not Hudson-Odoi.
The simple reason is that Chelsea needed goals. With a switch to 4-1-4-1 with Mount and Pulsiic as RAM and LAM, would have put more pressure on Southampton.
And the final substitution saw Willian coming off for Pedro. The Spaniard has not been doing anything special for the past 1.5 seasons and it should have been Michy Batshuayi or even Ross Barkley coming on. Chelsea need someone to sheet from distance or head the ball in the box, not someone to run around dribbling to the corner flag.
These are simple mistakes that have cost The Blues and seen them slip in the table. They are now in danger of dropping out of the top 4 before the start of 2020.
Frank Lampard and Jody Morris have it in them to turn things around and they need to do it quick. Expectations were low from the squad this season and nobody expects them to win all games. But beating relegation-threatened sides should be easy for these players as they are good enough.