Chelsea are under pressure as they prepare to face Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday following an indifferent run of form.
The Blues have lost three of their last five games in the Premier League, which in turn has left them just a point above nearest rivals Man Utd in the battle for a top-four finish.
With Arsenal still holding hope of closing the gap to be involved in that scrap in the coming months too, losing away at their direct rivals would be a huge blow, especially off the back of losing to Southampton at home last time out.
In turn, Lampard will be fully aware of the importance of this encounter and unsurprisingly he has gone with a strong starting line-up.
As confirmed by the club and as seen in their tweet below, there are two changes to the line-up from last time out, with Mateo Kovacic and Mason Mount coming back into the XI at the expense of Jorginho and Callum Hudson-Odoi.
However, neither Marcos Alonso nor Reece James have recovered from their respective injuries to get the nod while Christian Pulisic and Olivier Giroud have also been ruled out due to injury, as per the club’s report above.
With that in mind, it’s a blow for Chelsea to be without key individuals for such an important game, and particularly with the busy fixture schedule to continue in January, Lampard will hope to have a fully-fit squad at his disposal as soon as possible.
For now though, the focus will be on Arsenal and getting all three points in north London, as not only would it be a huge boost for the club in terms of their belief of holding on to that fourth spot and Champions League qualification, but it would also deal a real blow to a direct rival chasing the same objective.
Our 11 to face Arsenal! ?
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 29, 2019