Tag Archives: Manchester

Frank Lampard believes this young midfielder is ready for first-team action

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard believes Mason Mount is ready to make the first-team after a strong showing against Barcelona in pre-season. The England youth international started in the number 10 position against the Blaugrana and he managed to produce a commendable performance without finding the net.

Speaking after the 2-1 friendly triumph, Lampard said that Mount has announced himself into the first-team squad with the display against the Spanish champions. He added that the Japan tour has served the purpose of enhancing the fitness of the players and they need to keep working hard before the season opener against Manchester United next month.

He said: “Mason’s had a great trip and he’s announced himself into the first team squad.We’ve had two difficult games in humidity. The tour has served its purpose. We need to be fit and ready for Manchester United, and the clock runs down pretty quickly at this stage. Now we just have to keep working. It’s been a good tour and it’s always good to come to Japan. Most importantly it is work and both games have been good exercises for us.”

Mount, who penned a long-term deal with the Blues this month, has been a regular member of Lampard’s team for pre-season and he has started three of the club’s four matches. There had previously been doubts whether he could make the breakthrough with the Blues during the forthcoming campaign, but any uncertainty may have been erased with him being able to orchestrate the play with relative ease.

Still, the youngster cannot take his position for granted with the number of senior players in the club’s ranks and the remaining pre-season matches could decide whether he can command a starting role when the Premier League season begins. Chelsea face United on the road in the curtain raiser.

Chelsea Football Club – Manchester United F.C. 3-1 / Premiere League / 01-19-2013 / analyse

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Blues set to rotate for Swansea clash

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is likely to rotate his squad for this afternoon’s game against Swansea City with Sunday’s clash with Liverpool in mind.

Ashley Cole could be recalled at left-back, while Michael Essien is available after serving a one-match suspension.

The Blues are currently in fourth place, and sit two points behind leaders Liverpool, who themselves face third place Manchester City this evening while second place Arsenal travel to West Ham United.

Anything other than three points for Chelsea may could see the slip out of the top four with Everton hot on their heels.

Meanwhile, Mourinho is lining up a £48m move for Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain, according to the Mirror.

The pair worked together for three years at Real Madrid before both moved on to pastures new in the summer.

The Argentina international has been in fine form since joining Rafael Benitez’s side, scoring thirteen goals in twenty-one appearances in all competitions.

However, the Serie A side are reportedly willing to do business as it would secure them a quick profit of around £13.5m.

Only Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi scored more goals than the 26 year old during qualification for next summer’s World Cup finals, and will be keen to continue impressing with the tournament in Brazil fast approaching.