Frank Lampard has questioned the mentality of his Chelsea players in the wake of another disappointing result in the Premier League on Saturday.
The Blues missed the chance to capitalise on third-placed Leicester’s defeat at Norwich on Friday after being held to a 2-2 draw by Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.
Chelsea took the lead against the Cherries shortly after the half-hour mark when Marcos Alonso smashed the ball home from close range after Olivier Giroud hit the bar with a superb improvised volley.
The Cherries equalised in the 54th minute via a Jefferson Lerma header, and found themselves in front three minutes later as Josh King tapped home a low cross from Jack Stacey at the back post.
Alonso showed off his predatory instincts once again late on to spare Chelsea’s blushes, reacting quickest to head the ball past Aaron Ramsdale after the goalkeeper parried a Pedro shot back into the danger area.
Lampard has admitted to being unhappy with how his side defended against Bournemouth, while also highlighting a “concentration issue” which is threatening to derail the Blues’ top-four bid.
“It’s a mindset. Every game’s different, but you have to have a mindset within the group, on the pitch, because those things are not unexpected,” Lampard told the club’s official website.
“We spoke at half-time, for instance, about what may happen, what they may do, and then you rely on the players on the pitch. So together they have to solve issues. It’s been a problem.
“It’s always collective. As a group, we can’t be happy with it. This group has young players and experienced players and you can’t be happy when you have moments when you concede like that.
“I don’t think it matters how young you are, it isn’t naivety, I think there is a concentration issue. We have to concentrate even more.
“Games change with goals – the atmosphere in the stadium, the feelings of the other team. Sometimes you need to dig in and concentrate that little bit more as a group. We’ve been tested with that a lot and we talk about it a lot, but the players have to find a solution on the pitch.”
Lampard went on to bemoan Chelsea’s lack of cutting edge in the final third of the pitch, adding:
“At the other end of the scale, I think if we are clinical with our chances those moments aren’t there so much. Leaving games at 1-0 or 0-0 always gives the other team a chance.”