HomeOTHERChelsea (NN)The decreasing influence of Lampard

The decreasing influence of Lampard

Frank Lampard over the years has been an ever-present in the Chelsea side, scoring goals consistently and being a main attacking force in the Chelsea attack, however last season with his injury as well as his increasing age his influence has been decreasing for a while, he never really relied on pace and it showed in the previous season when our midfield was pedestrian. As well as being pedestrian there was a lack of creativity in midfield, Frank although an attacking threat doesn’t have the creativity comparatively to other Premier League midfielders such as Samir Nasri, Luka Modric and Cesc Fabregas.

Nasri, Modric and Fabregas may not necessarily have the goal scoring records of Lampard, especially Modric, however it is arguable that they are starting to have more of an influence on their teams. The chalkboards below show the influences of the players in different matches.  Lampard mainly operated in the middle of the park, while Modric in the chalkboard below is much more of an influence all over the pitch, being the link between defence and midfield as well as midfield and attack, Nasri can operate across midfield and also seems to get in the opposition’s area more. Fabregas also covers a bigger distance, he isn’t the link-up between defence and midfield like Modric is however he is willing to come deep to receive the ball as well as drifting in midfield.

The statistics shown below are of the previous season, they show the differing influences of the four midfielders, Lampard, Nasri, Fabregas and Modric.  We can see that Lampard is the most attacking in the sense that he has had the most attempted shots, this despite having the same number of appearances of Fabregas, however Fabregas has far and away the most assists. Modric is clearly the best ‘all-round’ midfielder out of the four, he’s had the best overall pass percentage as well as the most tackles and interceptions.

Arguably these statistics show that Lampard isn’t as much of an influence to Chelsea as Modric is to Spurs and Fabregas and Nasri are to Arsenal. This is due to the fact that Lampard hasn’t provided the assists that he has had in previous seasons, this could be down to the fact that he was injured for parts of the season as well as his age. The previous chalkboards show that Lampard had a tendency to play mainly in the middle of the pitch, he doesn’t drift as much as the others, this is arguably where Chelsea have been short in the last season, the creativity and pace has been wanting and this is where Lampard is partially to blame.

Over the seasons Lampard has provided Chelsea with over 20 goals a season and bursts in to the box, however last season with injuries as well as age, he hasn’t been able to do that, at times he has contributed to our slow distribution in midfield, dwelling too long on the ball. The lack of creativity and pace in the Chelsea midfield isn’t solely down to his lack of form although it is a large contributing factor.

In conclusion Frank Lampard’s influence on the Chelsea side is waning, although a fantastic midfielder over the years his contribution isn’t what it used to be, in fact it was sometimes a hinderance to the Chelsea side, he did provide key goals, such as those against Tottenham and Manchester United at home however during the season he didn’t provide the difference that was needed in most games where there was a deadlock and we were trying to unlock the opposition’s defence. This is why I compared him to other midfielders such as Modric, Fabregas and Nasri who all seem to do that job, especially Modric who has been linked with us all this summer.

Modric is a midfielder who can drop deep and be a link-up man, maybe this is the kind of shake up that Chelsea need. I think that although Lampard’s influence isn’t what it used to be, we shouldn’t dismiss him altogether, he can still provide important goals and assists. I just feel that we need to use him more sparingly, take for example Paul Scholes who was sparingly used by Sir Alex Ferguson at the end of his career and as such he was to become a substitute who could really make a difference. Lampard is a player that I think, for his future and also reputation as a fantastic footballer, should be used more of a squad player and under Andre Villas Boas who focuses on a ‘group dynamic’ as he put it, this will hopefully be done for both the player and the chances of success for the team.

Kieran Makwana
Kieran Makwana
My name is Kieran Makwana, currently studying Management at Lancaster University, I'm a lover of all things Chelsea Football Club, apart from Ron Gourlay. Follow me on Twitter - @BigMak92
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