Ngolo Kante is a machine, says Lampard after Chelsea lost UEFA Super Cup to Liverpool on penalties

Ngolo Kante is a machine, says Lampard after Chelsea lost UEFA Super Cup to Liverpool on penalties

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Every word Frank Lampard just said on Chelsea’s defeat to Liverpool, Kante, Abraham & Pulisic

A case of taking chances you maybe could have been out of sight today?

“I don’t know about out of sight because I respect Liverpool and they had some chances. For me I felt we were the stronger team. Maybe some bad luck and at times some bad finishing, we need to be more clinical. My overall feeling from the game is one of pride in the team’s performance and happiness. I don’t like losing, I’m a terrible loser as you should be at Chelsea. We wanted to win, but we were very unfortunate today. I am proud of the players and if that is a sign of what we can do today then this season we can get better and it’s a really good sign.”

The signs are there going forward?
“I think there were some signs against Manchester United, you can’t talk about them too much when you lose 4-0. Today was different, it was clear that it was a really good performance against a top team who have been building for years. Liverpool have got to where they’ve got and I have complete respect for Jurgen Klopp.

“I am a new manager who has been here for six weeks or so. I saw a work ethic, desire and some freedom in how we attack, move the ball and desire to get in behind teams and hurt them with our play. I thought it was great. People are obsessed with the young players at the minute, but I think every player, experienced and young, gave their everything. We were slightly unfortunate, but that is what penalties is I guess.”

Kante, how important is he in the future for Chelsea?

“He is an amazing player and character, he just wants to play. He is humble in his life, but on the pitch he is a machine. Of course he will be hugely important. This is a player who hasn’t trained much, had a swollen ankle on Tuesday evening and he wanted to play today and managed 120 minutes. You saw what he brings to the team. There will be more as he hasn’t trained much. I am delighted to work with him, I respect him so much as a player and now it is really nice to work with him. He will be really big for us.”

Important to have the fluidity of your midfield players?

“This is what I want to see, from the team. If you talk about midfielders, we have options. What I don’t want to do is put people in midfield positions and say ‘this is your absolute role and you stay in this area’. I want players to be free to move. When you have players with the quality of Kovacic, Jorginho and Kante, that is why we controlled big parts of the game. They are really good players. Then I have Narkley and Mount, players with energy. We can get better. There are things I want us to improve on in terms of how we play slightly. I am really happy with the performance. That is great for me. To lose is disappointing. But if it means Chelsea’s season can be something like how we played today we will be okay.

A case of taking chances you maybe could have been out of sight today?

“I don’t know about out of sight because I respect Liverpool and they had some chances. For me I felt we were the stronger team. Maybe some bad luck and at times some bad finishing, we need to be more clinical. My overall feeling from the game is one of pride in the team’s performance and happiness. I don’t like losing, I’m a terrible loser as you should be at Chelsea. We wanted to win, but we were very unfortunate today. I am proud of the players and if that is a sign of what we can do today then this season we can get better and it’s a really good sign.”

The signs are there going forward?
“I think there were some signs against Manchester United, you can’t talk about them too much when you lose 4-0. Today was different, it was clear that it was a really good performance against a top team who have been building for years. Liverpool have got to where they’ve got and I have complete respect for Jurgen Klopp.

“I am a new manager who has been here for six weeks or so. I saw a work ethic, desire and some freedom in how we attack, move the ball and desire to get in behind teams and hurt them with our play. I thought it was great. People are obsessed with the young players at the minute, but I think every player, experienced and young, gave their everything. We were slightly unfortunate, but that is what penalties is I guess.”

Disappointed conceding early in the second half?
“Yeah I was. I felt we could have scored more in the first half. The spirit was good in the dressing room. The players were determined to get out there and finish off what they started. You have to, I suppose, that Liverpool can hurt you and score any time because of the quality players they have. At the moment, a deflection, a bounce across the box, goes against us. After that we showed great character. We got ourselves in the game, stayed in the game and created chances at 2-1 down, got back to 2-2. I am disappointed that we did, but against Liverpool you can’t have it all your own way and the reaction was really good.”

Pulisic, pleased with his performance?
“Yeah I was pleased and there is a lot more to come. The expectancy is right, he is a big signing for us but you have to remember his age. He’s 20 and come into the league, into this game, against Liverpool, one of the most intense teams in football. It took a bit of time early in the game to get his feeling. But once he did, you could see his confidence in carrying the ball and to create. I am really happy with him. There is lots, lots more to come, again all the good signs for what he can be for the club.”

Who was your man of the match?
One of my players, obviously. But it is a difficult one. I loved the performance of Jorginho and Emerson, I thought they were both fantastic. When you think of the the 120 minutes for two players that played on Sunday evening. Liverpool were fresher than us. I thought they were leaders in the team. I liked the performance of all of my players. Not one player was below par today. Everybody gave everything. Subs gave an impact. So all good.”

Abraham, did you say anything to him after the game?

“Yeah I told him not to worry. The fact that he is confident enough to stand up and want to take a fifth penalty. I have been there, missed penalties. Anyone can. I want the confidence of a young player to stand up and want to do that. I said not to worry. He will come back stronger. It is part and parcel of being a player in the top level, which Tammy now is. These moments come. We have to be very supportive of him. His team-mates were, I certainly am. That is football.”

Liverpool played on Friday, you on Sunday. Did that have an effect on your preparations?

“I am pleased you asked that. It is clear to me going into the match, it is difficult because I don’t want to look like an excuse-maker, but if you’re playing a game as important as the Super Cup, for us to play away in Manchester on Sunday evening, and for Liverpool to play at home on Friday evening, have two more days recovery at this early stage of the season, it is clear that it has an effect on your preparation and it is an advantage for them going in.

“Now, the way the players played you wouldn’t know it because they kept going for 120 minutes. It is unfortunate that when you have a game at this level that there is a clear two day extra recovery and preparation for a team. That said, I think it happens a lot. I don’t want to seem like I’m moaning. I am delighted with the performance. We didn’t lose the game because of that, but it was a bit frustrating.”

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