Chelsea youngster Fikayo Tomori has hailed the impact of Blues boss Frank Lampard on the squad.
The Stamford Bridge outfit were handed a transfer ban last summer, which meant that Lampard would have to rely heavily on Chelsea’s academy products while also dealing with the loss of talisman Eden Hazard to Real Madrid going into the season.
However, the Blues have managed a run to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and were sitting in fourth place in the Premier League table despite all their difficulties before the league was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking to Sky Sports about Lampard’s influence on the squad and playing with experienced players, Tomori said:
“Coming into this season, the young players felt we had an opportunity and the manager said he wanted to play youngsters.
“Tammy (Abraham) and Mason (Mount) were scoring goals, I managed to get into the team, Reece (James) came back and started doing well after his injury.
“But being able to bounce off each other makes it a much more comfortable environment for us and we can relax and play our game. Then the experienced players like Antonio (Rudiger) and Azpi (Cesar Azpilicueta), the ones who have been there and done it, sharing a changing room with Pedro who has won everything, it makes it easier to adapt and get to learn from these players.”
While speaking about how Lampard helps the younger players stay calm, Tomori said:
“Coming into [this season] I was trying to be relaxed about it all – but you’ve got your friends and family saying you’re playing for Chelsea, you’re playing in the Champions League and stuff.
“Sometimes that gets in your head, and you just think this is actually happening, it’s a dream. I try to stay focused and we’ve got the manager who’s played at World Cups and Champions League finals, he keeps us all calm and especially with the young players who are new to this stuff, there’s a lot of arm around our shoulders. The season’s been great and hopefully, we can finish it off.”
Chelsea have certainly fared considerably well considering this is only Lampard’s first season in charge at Stamford Bridge and it’s certain the team will look to push on from here with qualification for the Champions League the main aim this season while keeping the momentum going into next season.