Everything looked to be going so well for Frank Lampard at the start of the season, but we might get to learn a lot about his ability to manage a team through a down period in the next few weeks.
Few fans would actually have expected them to win the Champions League this season, but the manner of the defeat to Bayern Munich last week was disappointing, while they also face a fight for fourth place now.
When everything is going well then nobody questions decisions, but that changes when the results don’t go your way.
One of the biggest stories surround Chelsea right now is the future of Kepa. Willy Caballero has started the past few games, but he’s not exactly world class, but it’s now been five games so the benching of the Spaniard feels permanent.
That’s led to plenty of speculation that Kepa may look to leave in the Summer, but a recent report from Sky Sports showed that Lampard has tried to play that down.
He said: “Every player is in control of their own destiny. Kepa’s training well, but Willy Caballero also is training well. He’s been playing pretty well – made some really good saves against Bayern Munich.”
“Every position is the same – you train well to try to get in the team if you’re not in it. When you play, you try and play at performance levels that keep you in the team. That’s the standards we have to have at this club – they’re the ones that I demand.”
“I have competition there but I will decide as we go. That’s why I am very strong on the fact that how you train, and how you turn up every day, is pivotal in how you are as a Chelsea player.”
The biggest problem is this strategy could seriously backfire and cost Chelsea in many ways. Firstly you have to think his confidence will be shattered, which could result in more mistakes if he does play again.
The other issue is this sends a message to other teams that you don’t really value Kepa, so they will use that to drive down the price for any potential deal in the Summer.
It’s not like he was playing well before this, but you do have to question if this was the best way of dealing with things.