Frank Lampard is getting the hang of this elite management lark.

If in doubt, have a pop at the scheduling.

“I don’t want to look like I am moaning but it clearly affects preparation – it’s unfortunate they (Liverpool) had two days extra recovery,” he said, following defeat in Istanbul.

Unfortunate is about all it is. Very mildly unfortunate. At this stage of a season, it does not matter a jot whether a top team plays two matches in six days or two matches in four days.

Lampard was simply being a bit of a sore loser and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

And if Lampard really wants to have a serious moan, he might address FIFA’s punishment of Manchester City for breaching regulations surrounding the transfer and registration of under-18 players.

Lampard saw his side lose on penalties in Istanbul

A £314,000 fine. That will teach ‘em. They pay Pep Guardiola that in a week.

For similar offences, Chelsea were not only fined £460,000 but were handed a two-window transfer ban.

They are appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport but have already served one window of the sanction.

There was a long statement from FIFA explaining the reasoning behind the scale of Manchester City’s punishment but it basically amounted to one simple thing.

City coughed to the crime.

Despite this, the discrepancy between the punishments is bizarre and Chelsea will surely have the ban lifted ahead of January.

Lampard was quick to point out the difference in rest between the two sides

It has already meant Lampard has been slightly hamstrung in his start to managerial life at Chelsea.

That is why serious judgement has to be restrained until after he has had a chance to recruit extra personnel to suit his style.

But from the Super Cup evidence, Chelsea fans – despite that emphatic opening day reversal at Old Trafford – should be buoyant about the prospect of a Lampard era.

And that is what it should be.

He is at the bottom of a steep learning curve, has been unable to sign players and has had to cope with the departure of a footballer who was absolutely fundamental to the team’s fortunes.

Lampard watches on

It is impossible to under-estimate the seriousness of the loss of Eden Hazard.

Yet there were signs, for a short while against Manchester United and for a long while against Liverpool, that Lampard will instil an adventurous, attractive brand of football into this Chelsea side.

Signs that he will return N’Golo Kante to his rightful manor and will actually help Jorginho show why coaches such as Guardiola believe he is an outstanding player.

If Pep thinks you can play, you can play.

Jorginho will be key to Lampard’s plans and Christian Pulisic was full of promise in Istanbul.

Lampard is bidding to bring the good times back to the Bridge

In the long term, Lampard will also look forward to welcoming back Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

More crucially, sooner or later depending on the judges looking at their appeal, he will be able to sign his own men. A striker and a centre-half will probably be his opening gambits.

If Lampard does not get a win or two under his belt over the next couple of weeks, there are bound to be debates about whether this has been a premature appointment.

There should not be.

Even in two losses, there has already been enough to suggest Lampard should be in his dream gig for the long haul.





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