In Chelsea’s recent history, no manager has trusted in youth quite as much as Frank Lampard – who is less than a month into his first season at the helm.
It may only have been newly promoted Sheffield United at Stamford Bridge on Saturday but Lampard boldly went for three academy graduates – Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori – in the youngest line-up the Blues have ever fielded in a Premier League fixture.
Abraham had the kind of match he has dreamed about since he first joined the club as an eight-year-old. After last weekend’s double at Norwich, he scored his first two senior goals at Stamford Bridge.
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In the end, though, this was like a recurring defensive nightmare for Lampard’s Chelsea, as Kurt Zouma’s late own goal gifted the visitors a 2-2 draw.
Sheffield United were good value for their point, though, because while the home side impressed going forward, their tactical issues at the back remain.
The Blues press was unable to shackle Chris Wilder’s adventurous and innovative side. Lampard’s tactics have not set in, as underlined by the fact that the Blues have the second-worst defence in the Premier League.
Looking on the bright side, Abraham is starting to look like the goalscorer Chelsea have been awaiting.