Man­ager hails Mount for ‘huge work ethic’ as he leads from the front

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Total Football - By James Ducker

Frank Lam­pard has chal­lenged Ma­son Mount to score more goals as he hailed his young Chelsea mid­fielder’s star turn against Manch­ester United.

Mount claimed his sev­enth goal of the cam­paign af­ter David de Gea spilt his shot a minute af­ter the restart, and Lam­pard be­lieves the 21-year-old’s de­ter­mi­na­tion to press from the front set the tone for an im­pres­sive team dis­play.

“I think with Ma­son that’s a big thing this year now. He’s got huge tal­ent on the ball... but there’s im­prove­ment that can be made with him,” the Chelsea man­ager said.

“He wants to be a player – and I mean a top player – so much. The fi­nal pass, the amount of goals he can score in a sea­son, they’re go­ing to come be­cause he’s young and it’s his first sea­son in Premier League foot­ball, and you look at the amount of games he’s played.

“But his work ethic off the ball is huge. Some­times it can get missed, but when you see a per­for­mance when you need work ethic off the ball and he leads from the front, with his age but his bound­less en­ergy and com­mit­ment, it’s a mas­sive thing for me when I’m look­ing at how I want us to play and the team I pick.”

Lam­pard said he had not en­cour­aged his play­ers to tar­get De Gea with shots from dis­tance, but has been urg­ing Mount to shoot with more power.

“It wasn’t be­cause I have huge re­spect for him [De Gea],” Lam­pard said. “Peo­ple hone in on keep­ers when they make er­rors be­cause they are crit­i­cal.

“I told Ma­son at half-time that I wanted to see him strike through balls more. Ma­son had a shot in first-half, he tried to whip it. Out­side the box against keep­ers of qual­ity, you have to strike through.

“Of course, he didn’t catch it bril­liantly and it went in, so it goes down as a mis­take. But my job is to worry about my play­ers. Three min­utes af­ter I said strike through it, he did.”

Chelsea will guar­an­tee a top­four spot if they beat Liver­pool at An­field on Wed­nes­day and Lam­pard is con­fi­dent his team are head­ing in the right di­rec­tion af­ter se­cur­ing a place in the FA Cup fi­nal.

“It’s a great achieve­ment to get there,” he said. “To win a semi is good, to win a fi­nal is bet­ter. It’s right up there, the per­for­mance. We are pro­gress­ing. We are get­ting bet­ter. There are al­ways go­ing to be some bumps in the road. To­day was a per­for­mance of huge char­ac­ter, per­son­al­ity, work ethic, qual­ity. I’m de­lighted.

“Peo­ple have some­times looked at us this sea­son as Chelsea, where ex­pec­ta­tions are al­ways high, but there is a re­al­ity be­yond that. We are work­ing to­wards some­thing. We want to close the gap. It doesn’t come easy.

“We have seen that with other teams in recent years. It is step by step. We want to win the fi­nal. We have shown lots of good stuff this year. With more work and what we do in the sum­mer, I think there will be more to come, but we have to fo­cus on the three fi­nals we have – two league games and Arse­nal in the FA Cup.”

Blow: Eric Bailly re­ceives treat­ment af­ter a first-half clash of heads which re­sulted in the United cen­tre-back be­ing taken to hos­pi­tal

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.