Frank Lampard takes the idea and the job of a designated penalty taker very seriously. We saw that throughout his playing career — as Didier Drogba and Michael Ballack can surely attest to — and we’ve seen it during his tenure as Chelsea manager as well, including just recently with the whole Jorginho vs Tammy Abraham incident over the second penalty late on against Crystal Palace. Jorginho of course took that one and scored, as he’s done so with the vast majority of penalties he’s taken throughout his career, before and since coming to Chelsea.
In fact, Jorginho had not missed a (non-shootout) penalty for Chelsea before this season (7-of-7) and had only one such miss in his entire career in 21 attempts, back in 2017 against Udinese’s young Simone Scuffet. But 2020 is a weird year and nothing can be taken for granted anymore, including the man who did the hop-skip way before Bruno Fernandes wore it out.
Jorginho’s miss against Krasnodar last night was already his second this season, having had one saved against Liverpool last month, in the Premier League. That could’ve made a difference back then, possibly providing a way back into the game. This second miss didn’t prove too problematic in the end, with Chelsea running out 4-0 winners, including a penalty from Timo Werner towards the end. Jorginho had been substituted off by then, so there was no controversy, but Werner’s emphatic style as he absolutely leathered the ball into the back of the net was perhaps emblematic of a shift change at the penalty-taking helm in more ways than one.
After the game, Lampard admitted that he will put this under consideration in the next few days.
“Jorginho has had an incredibly successful rate of scoring penalties in his career, particularly at Chelsea. My feeling is when you take as many penalties as he does, there can be periods when you miss one, and sometimes there can be periods where you miss one or two. I experienced that as a player.
“I’ve got no problem at all with his style of taking them, because of the success he’s had, and Timo Werner, I know he’s very capable to take penalties as we saw. We have other players that can as well, so I’ll talk with the players afterwards to see how we move forward. But we have good penalty takers at the club.”
-Frank Lampard; source: Sky
Of course, we have to be careful what we wish for. Ross Barkley missed a costly penalty last season in the Champions League that ultimately may have cost us top position in the group. And Jorginho still has an incredible record of 23-from-26 for his career, which is still better or at least on par with Eden Hazard (26-for-31 at Chelsea; 49-for-56 career) and Frank Lampard himself (49-for-57 at Chelsea; 60-for-70 career). For what it’s worth, Werner has now scored his last six, which has improved his record to 14-from-17.
Or maybe we should just let whoever wins the penalty have first dibs?