Alaba latest, Mendy praise, Lampard on Gilmour, Krasnodar build-up


Jurgen Klopp’s claim that Chelsea are Premier League title favourites has not deterred Frank Lampard.

He insisted: “I don’t think we think much of it. Liverpool and Manchester City have built a great squad, there are others in contention.

“I think where we are out, we are in good form, but we have players who have come in and City and Liverpool have had a lot of success for long periods. We are trying to reach that.”

Kepa Arrizabalaga is back in the line-up for the Krasnodar clash.

And Lampard has claimed that Chelsea are under no pressure to sell the flop keeper.

He said: “There’s no pressure.

“The pressure is to win games and I have to do the right thing to win games, and Mendy has made himself a permanent fixture at this point.

“The pressure to win games means I pick people in form – goalkeeper, striker, winger, whoever. At the same time it’s obviously an opportunity to give Edu a rest and give Kepa a game. He deserves it.”

And finally, Jamie Carragher believes Chelsea are ‘as strong’ as any other Premier League team this season.

He told Sky Sports: “In these early stages of the season, it looks like they’ve recruited really well.

“You look at the alternative options for Chelsea and the only player who, if he went into the Chelsea team is Billy Gilmour because he’s still in the infancy of his career and is classed as a young player.

“If any one of those players played for Chelsea, you wouldn’t think they were a reserve or they made the team weaker. You can make an argument that it’s as strong a squad as anyone in the Premier League.

“You could maybe argue, or I think it’s a fact, that Liverpool and Man City have a strong XI, but in terms of back-up players right now and other teams getting injuries – certainly Liverpool – that strength of the squad is absolutely fantastic and it doesn’t feel like the team would be weakened too much no matter who was playing.”

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