Frank Lampard pinpoints where Chelsea struggled after manager's reign begins with draw

Frank Lampard admitted it was a ‘tough’ start to his Chelsea tenure after seeing his side limp to a draw against Bohemians in their first pre-season encounter of the summer.

The Blues were held to a 1-1 draw in Dublin on Wednesday night as Michy Batshuayi’s first-half opener was cancelled out by trialist Eric Molloy’s strike a minute from time.

There were a host of other familiar faces on show alongside Batshuayi, with midfielders Danny Drinkwater and Tiemoue Bakayoko also getting run outs as Lampard played two different XIs in each half.

But it was a sour finale after Molloy’s late strike earned a draw for the Irish hosts and Lampard, who has returned to the club where he is considered a legend, is aware of the challenge ahead.

Frank Lampard took charge of his first game as Chelsea manager

He said: “It was a good run-out, we had good support and thanks for people turning out. It was a tough first game for us as we have not been back for long.

“We’ve only been back just a few days so there had been some pressure on the lads and we have been working them very hard. I am pleased with the outcome.

“Fitness was our issue but I wanted to stretch them a bit and put them under pressure.

“This is what pre-season is all about and the quicker we get there, to the level we want, then the better. We wanted to win the game as you always do but it is not about that.”

Chelsea’s Michy Batshuayi opened the scoring on Wednesday

The Stamford Bridge legend, however, praised his squad for their attitude since he took over the reins and is looking forward to welcoming Christian Pulisic to his squad.

He added: “It is about individuals getting fit and pushing themselves to the limit and I thought some of the performances – particularly from the younger lads – was really good.”

“I have been really happy. We have high standards and we have brought that in. We need intensity in our game and I am pleased with the way their have worked and their attitude.

“This game was very early but the other players are back other than the injured boys and Pulisic is not with us yet but you will see some of them at the weekend.”

Lampard described the game as a ‘tough’ start to his tenure

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It was Batshuayi, on the fringes under Antonio Conte and farmed out on loan by Maurizio Sarri, who hit the first goal of the Lampard era after just eight minutes in Dublin, lashing the ball home from close range after Kenedy’s shot was blocked in the box.

He’ll be hoping there is more where that came from – and that Lampard will give him the chance to provide it.

The home side were left happy, however, as trialist Molloy was rammed past substitute keeper Jamie Cumming to finish off a sweeping move in the 89th minute.


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