Lampard Singles Out Kovacic For Praise After Chelsea’s Defeat To Bayern

Lampard Singles Out Kovacic For Praise After Chelsea’s Defeat To Bayern

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard singled out midfielder Mateo Kovacic for praise following his team’s 3-0 defeat to Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.

A second-half brace by former Arsenal forward Serge Gnabry and a goal from Robert Lewandowski condemned Chelsea to a heavy defeat and left their chances of progressing to the quarter-final in tatters.

Lampard admitted that Bayern were simply too good for his young side on the night, but felt many of them could learn a lot from the assured
performance of Kovacic.

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“They need to understand the levels that the Champions League is when they get to the knockout stage,” Lampard said.

“A lot of the players there either haven’t played it, played maybe the Europa League, which is a big difference or played in it a few years ago (but) certainly not at Chelsea to a point where we got to success of semi-final, final, win it kind of times.

“I thought there were a couple of performances in our team, namely Kovacic, who played with a personality and a quality that makes you go, ‘okay, he can play in pretty much any team with that level.’

Chelsea will now re-focus on ensuring they will be playing in next season’s Champions League with a trip to Bournemouth on Saturday as they look to maintain their three point gap over Manchester United in the race for fourth place in the Premier League.

However, they could be without Tammy Abraham, after their top scorer appeared to limp out of their warmdown against Bayern Munich after suffering an injury late on in the game.

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