Frank Lampard believes Manchester United pose the greatest threat to Chelsea’s chances of Champions League qualification.
Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has identified Manchester United as his side’s biggest threat to securing Champions League qualification. The Blues are currently fourth in the Premier League, just a single point behind Leicester.
However, the Blues are only two points clear of United with five matches of the season remaining so there is plenty to play for during the run-in.
The Red Devils are on a five-match unbeaten run since the end of lockdown, including victories in their past three Premier League matches which have kept them in touch with Lampard’s men.
Chelsea currently occupy the final Champions League qualification spot but the Blues cannot afford to slip up, having dropped points at West Ham last week.
When asked if United are Chelsea’s biggest threat, Lampard said: “From behind? Yeah, they are closest, they are a very strong team, they are in great form for a long period of time.
“Theyve got really good players, really good individual players.
“Youve seen the momentum theyve gained at this part of the season, individuals across their front three are all scoring lots of goals.
“They are the biggest threat from behind.
“But as Ive said before, this is the Premier League and it looks that way today, its how us as a team finishes the season game by game.”
Chelsea have won three out of their four Premier League fixtures since the return of English football, including a 2-1 victory over Manchester City.
They also booked their spot in the FA Cup semi-finals by edging past Leicester but the 3-2 reverse against West Ham has given United hope of overhauling the Blues.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have been in superb goalscoring form, beating Sheffield United and Brighton 3-0 before hammering Bournemouth 5-2 on Saturday.
Lampard has suggested United’s run of form will motivate his Chelsea players into ensuring matters remain in their control during the final stages of the season.
“Id like to think they [Chelsea players] are not ignoring what is happening around them. Football has never be on TV more than it has at this time,” said Lampard.
“I expect them to buy into that and want to see what results are happening around us. I think thats pretty much human nature. On a sporting level I think that means you care and want to see whats happening.
“And then there has to be a slight switch off and a flip to the fact you focus on yourselves. We cant control the other games, were interested in them but we can certainly control what we do.
“It can fire you up a little bit, seeing whats happening around you. But the position were in means a lot is in our own hands and thats the main thing.
“When we train, when we prepare, when we play, we focus absolutely on putting out the best performance.”