Chelsea finished the Premier League season in a creditable fourth position, with the FA Cup final ahead of them and a chance for Frank Lampard to end his debut campaign as manager with some silverware.
One of his pressing concerns is the future of Kepa Arrizabalaga, whom Lampard dropped for the final Premier League match of the season against Wolves.
There have long been question marks over Kepa’s suitability between the sticks for the Blues, and his form over the course of the 2019/20 season has been far from what’s expected of a custodian who broke the club record for a new signing when he put pen to paper on a £71.5m deal.
However, Lampard doesn’t want to deal with any future sale or otherwise regarding Kepa until the FA Cup final has been played.
“I have long, hard thinks about everything, not just individual positions but how we are as a team,” Lampard said after the Wolves game, cited by the Daily Mirror.
“The idea that we haven’t kept a clean sheet is definitely not just a reflection of the goalkeeper, but something that we have to work on as a team. How we train and maybe how we improve going forward.
“I don’t want to pinpoint it on Kepa. [The] Kepa decision was a choice, probably in recent form and recent situation [it’s] a tough time for him.
“I felt like Willy coming in with confidence, off the back of a strong performance against Man United last week was what we needed today for the game.
“I don’t want to jump forward beyond the Arsenal game next week. It would be wrong.
“The squad is really strong at the moment as a unit, how they are on and off the pitch. I want that to stay for at least one more week domestically, then Bayern Munich. Looking to next season after that.”
The Blues have already worked the transfer market well, having signed Timo Werner from RB Leipzig and Hakim Ziyech from Ajax. Kai Havertz is thought to be another player that the club are looking at.
Should Lampard ultimately decide that Kepa is surplus to requirements, then he may well have the option of making offers for one of European football’s top keepers to replace him.