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Lampard delighted with season and ‘bigger picture’ at Chelsea, with ‘plenty of room’ to improve

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Chelsea head coach reflects on the season as a whole after Saturday’s frustrating loss

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Arsenal v Chelsea - FA Cup Final Photo by Chris Lee - Chelsea FC/Getty Images

Chelsea’s (domestic) season didn’t quite end the way we wanted it to. While the Blues secured a fourth place finish and Champions League qualification, we fell short in the FA Cup final, with Arsenal getting to celebrate an actual trophy instead.

And that’s certainly frustrating, especially given the manner of the loss, both in terms of Chelsea’s shortcomings as well as in terms of the historically bad officiating. But there’s nothing we can do about the latter.

If we look at the former, there’s plenty to be happy about. Well, maybe not “happy” per se, but hopeful. Expectant. Optimistic.

Chelsea were hardly given a chance to finish in the top four let alone make a Cup final. We also reached the knockout rounds of the Champions League, which wasn’t exactly guaranteed given the strength of the group. Having done so in large part with “our own” (about a third of all minutes played by players from the Academy), with a very young team, in a transition season, with a transfer ban, etc. etc. etc — those circumstances have been mentioned perhaps a bit too often, but that shouldn’t invalidate their actual impact.

Losing a final hurts and makes it hard to be happy, but just like Lampard, we must now look at the bigger picture.

“I am delighted with the season [...] We have to reflect on the season going into it, where people did not expect us to be in the top four. There were unknowns, the transfer ban, other clubs around us moved forward with recruitment and we could not. So I don’t think this result (in the Cup final) takes anything away. Far from it.”

Most importantly, the future is bright. That again is a cliché, but in this case, isn’t just a vague ideal. Chelsea are already making waves in the transfer market and the young players already in the team will only getter.

And we’ve got Super Frank Lampard guiding us. He himself has a lot to learn, but that’s part of this (potentially) most beautiful journey we’ve begun as a club. And that is indeed something we can look forward to without reservation.

“We have lost a final and that is frustrating for us, but there is a bigger picture that we are working to here. We have seen lots of good things, but we need to understand that there are lots of things to work on.

“For sure we should be, the players should be, proud of how they have competed all season domestically and the League position was a huge plus for us because, let’s get it right, not many people gave us that chance at the start and now we have to look to see how we get better. Saturday showed us that there is plenty of room to get better.”

-Frank Lampard; source: Telegraph

The fun has just begun.