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Lampard: Chelsea ‘underperforming’ even ‘in the basics’ right now

Still haven’t hit rock bottom

Arsenal FC v Chelsea FC - Premier League Photo by Chris Lee - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

So, that’s six losses in a row and nine without a win. The worst season in three decades continues to plumb new depths. Rock bottom still may not be visible, let alone anywhere near under our feet.

Not that anyone truly gave Chelsea any chance against Arsenal, out of form or not. In years past, Chelsea would’ve relished the opportunity to play spoilers for our rivals, who . This Chelsea team doesn’t seem to relish much. The first half was some of the clearest indication yet of how everybody seems to have checked out a long time ago — even if Frank Lampard defended his players’ intentions afterwards while calling out their levels of performance once again.

“The first half performance was not good enough, in every way. We were nice to play against in every way, nice off the ball, passive. Things we spoke about before the game defensively we didn’t do. [...] We’ve got to do the basics a bit better.

“[...] I want to be quite clear about this [...] I know the casual answer to the first half can be the players didn’t have pride or didn’t care enough; the players certainly do. I’m not questioning the players as lads. From being good lads to transferring it onto the pitch. [But while] there are some things you go ‘fine, we need to get better at that’ [...] there are some things that you go ‘lads, they are the basics and they have to be better’.

“I spoke a lot about confidence [before]. The team is low on confidence but it’s also underperforming in the basics.”

Have we forgotten how to play football? Some of the stuff we’ve been seeing simply boggles the mind. Calling it amateur-hour might be generous.

We have five games left to show some basic level of competence, some personal pride of performance. Lampard may not be the one personally auditioning players for next season, but surely someone else is watching.

“Now it’s the question of five games to compete with each other, like Noni did tonight in his performance from two weeks of good training, to show you deserve to be in the team. Those should be the rules anyway: now or never. People say there’s nothing on these games but they’re wrong. Every individual has a lot on these games.”

“[We] have only got five games and four weeks until the end of the season. All I care about now is seeing a better first half than I saw, and even the second half was good but it’s still not what we can do.”

-Frank Lampard; source: Football.London

Next up: Bournemouth away on Saturday.

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