Hakim Ziyech capped off his full debut for Chelsea with a goal and Frank Lampard has described the winger as a superb player.
Frank Lampard has backed Hakim Ziyech to build on his first Chelsea goal after an injury hindered start to his time at Stamford Bridge.
Ziyech picked up an injury in Chelsea’s shortened pre-season and had been restricted to just three substitute appearances since his transfer from Ajax.
However, he was fit enough to make his full debut in Wednesday’s 4-0 Champions League win over Krasnodar and marked the occasion with his first goal.
The Morocco international rifled home his side’s third goal in the 79th minute against Krasnodar.
“Hakim was fit today, the first time he’s really been fit to start a game,” Lampard said during his post-match news conference.
“He has worked really hard to be fit and I was very keen to get his quality into the team.
“We saw that for the whole period he was on the pitch. He brought a lot of quality and calmness and got a well-deserved goal.”
Ziyech has been directly involved in 13 goals in his last 15 Champions League starts and Lampard is pleased he is finally getting to see the winger on the field.
“I thought his performance was very very good when you consider he hasn’t started a match since March when the Dutch league finished,” he said.
“So I have been very excited to get him on the pitch so it has been frustrating for me and for him that his injury hasn’t allowed him to start.
“But what I have seen in training so far and what I knew we were signing as a player was a player with immense quality and personality to receive the ball, assist and find goals.
“We saw a lot of glimpses of that today. We brought him in to do a job and maybe people have forgotten a bit because we signed him in January and he missed the start of the season. Tonight, he certainly showed he is here.”
Callum Hudson-Odoi opened the scoring in Russia with his first goal in the Champions League, benefiting from goalkeeper Matvey Safonov’s error.
The winger has featured only 22 times in the Premier League since the start of last season due to injuries, but no Chelsea player has more assists-per-game than his 0.53 in that time, while his 2.12 chances created is also the highest of any player at Stamford Bridge.
Asked about Hudson-Odoi’s display, Frank Lampard said: “The goal is clearly going to be good for his confidence. There were things I liked in his game today, like his desire to run in behind the defence.
“Sometimes one v one, it didn’t go his way but I’m very pleased that when you play in the Champions League and get your goal.”
Hudson-Odoi’s breakthrough strike came 23 minutes after Jorginho had hit the post from the penalty spot – the second time he has missed from 12 yards in his last four attempts.
Timo Werner showed Jorginho how it is done by tucking away a penalty of his own in the second half, opening the floodgates for Chelsea as Ziyech and Christian Pulisic wrapped up the win with a late flurry.
Lampard insisted he has no issues with Jorginho’s penalty-taking technique but hinted he is not against naming Werner as the Blues’ regular taker, as he was at RB Leipzig.
“Jorginho has had an incredibly successful rate of scoring penalties in his career, particularly at Chelsea,” he said.
“My feeling is that when you take as many penalties as he does there can be periods when you can miss one or two. I’ve experienced that as a player.
“I’ve no problem at all with his style of taking them because of the success he has had and Timo Werner I know is very capable of taking penalties, as we saw.
“We have other players that can so I’ll talk with them afterwards to see how we move forward but we have good takers at the club.”
Marcus Rashford named among TIME Magazine’s next 100 most influential people
Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has been as one of TIME magazine’s ‘next 100 most influential people in the world’,...
Son Heung-Min dismisses rumors of Jose Mourinho losing the Tottenham dressing room
Son Heung-min has laughed off suggestions that Jose Mourinho has lost the Tottenham dressing room following a bad run of...
Paul Pogba to miss Europa League clash due to injury
Manchester United will be without Paul Pogba for the rest of the month, as he still needs a few weeks to recover from a thigh injury. Paul Pogba will not play again in February, with the Manchester United midfielder still needing a couple of weeks...
Kylian Mbappe’s hat-trick downs misfiring Barcelona
Not since 2005 had a visiting player scored a hat trick away to Barcelona, with Kylian Mbappe’s hat-trick against Barcelona...
Fernandes slams United’s mentality and defending in Everton 3-3 draw
Bruno Fernandes couldn’t contain his anger in the wake of Manchester United’s 3-3 draw with Everton as he let loose...
MUN 6-2 Leeds: Scott McTominay is a ‘Physical Monster’ who does Sensational things – Ole
Scott McTominay emerged an unlikely Manchester United goal hero, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer maintains his midfield prodigy “can do everything”....
Zidane hails Benzema after important brace against Bilbao
Zinedine Zidane praised Karim Benzema after the striker powered Real Madrid past Athletic Bilbao in LaLiga on Tuesday. Benzema netted...
Transfer Rumours: Eriksen prefers PSG move to Premier League return
Danish International Christian Eriksen has reportedly turned down a move which would have seen him return to the Premier League...
It’s an honor to be involved in France Football’s All Time XI: Cristiano Ronaldo
Juventus and Portugal’s ace striker Cristiano Ronaldo has reacted to his inclusion in France Football’s All Time XI, saying how...