Chelsea were handed a double injury boost ahead of their London derby against Fulham, as Reece James and Andreas Christensen were declared fit for the trip. Chelsea are winless in their last five Premier League outings, and will hope to register a win against their neighbours on Saturday.
Having picked up just 4 points from their last 6 matches, Frank Lampard is under intense pressure to turn things around at Chelsea. The Blues were battered by a brilliant Manchester City side in their last Premier League outing, but returned to winning ways in their FA Cup 3rd round tie against Morecambe.
Speaking to reporters ahead of the derby, Lampard admitted his players need to have a positive attitude despite the poor results. The Blues manager added “My concern has been training and the atmosphere around that because when you haven’t won for a few games it’s clear the players need to stay positive.”
“That starts from the staff. I have seen good reactions from the players. They have worked hard. We have had two pretty long weeks of training for pretty much the first time this season. We have had a chance to work in training on bigger elements of our game. We have worked at a really physical level which is important if you want to improve as a team.“
“No matter what squad you have, and particularly if you have young or new players, you need time to work. Last season we had that, and even with a young and imbalanced squad we had a long pre-season and moments in the season where we could work.”
“Those two weeks have given us a chance to refocus on the basics of our game, what we are and how we want to play. I just want to see those things come through.”
Speaking on their opponent Fulham, Lampard warned Chelsea to be wary of Scott Parker’s side, who nicked points against Liverpool and Tottenham. He added “It’s an exciting fixture. I always felt it had an extra edge to it. It has a different relationship to other derbies, Fulham were sometimes in the Premier League, sometimes not, but when they came they had a feeling of wanting to beat us.”
“Without fans it takes a slight edge off things, but mentally as players and as a club we should retain that passion of what this game means.”
“Fulham are playing well, they played very well last night against Tottenham, they could have won. That’s been their recent form.”
“We must credit Scott and his team. With a change of system and how they’ve worked, you can see a clear style of play. They are very well organised and don’t give many chances to teams. They have threats throughout their team.”
“They’ve drawn with Liverpool recently, they drew with Tottenham, and it’ll be a tough game no matter but we have to focus on ourselves.”