Lampard: Players’ effort, not tactics, to blame for Chelsea defeat

Ian Watson

Frank Lampard could not hide his frustration after Chelsea’s miserable performance in their 3-1 defeat to Arsenal.

A poor first-half display saw Chelsea lose for the third time in four games in the league, missing an opportunity to go second in the Premier League.

Instead, they sit in seventh place after a performance that left Lampard furious.

“I am angry because I want us to win games,” he told Sky Sports.

“We were lazy to give away a penalty, lazy to give away a free-kick that he (Xhaka) puts in the top corner and I am very, very disappointed in the way we approached the first half because some things in football are basics.

“It is not tactics or systems, it is do you want to run, back your team-mate out and sprint? Or do you want to jog and say ‘maybe I don’t have to run’ and we took that decision instead of the right one.”

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The Chelsea manager accused some of his players of being at only “60 or 70 per cent” during the defeat at the Emirates.

Lampard added: “I will take responsibility on the outside but the players have to take the responsibility because the message was clear.

“This was a dangerous game for us, a talented team, back against the wall and a London derby. We were in a good position where we could have gone second and they were in a position looking downwards. That is a dangerous combination, the players knew that and we prepared for the game.

“But if you go out and play at 60 to 70 per cent, or a few players who played at that level, you are not going to win any Premier League game.”