Chelsea managers Frank Lampard may turn his focus to signing tall players to solve their set-piece problems as he made comparisons with the old Chelsea team and Liverpool.
The defeat against West Ham United highlighted Chelsea’s poor set-piece defence.
The Hammers netted twice from corner kicks, although Lampard’s men were fortunate that the VAR ruled out the first of the two.
Chelsea have conceded nine corner goals so far this season from 110 corner kicks, ranked second-worst in Europe at 8.1% rate.
The manager clearly understands the situation and argued that the problem has existed since last season.
He told the reporters ahead of Watford game (via the Guardian): “We’ve looked at set-pieces this season.
“When we came into the club we looked at the stats from last season. Last season we were bottom of the league defending set plays, in terms of teams getting big chances against us, and second bottom in attacking.
“We haven’t improved much this year.”
He had a point there. Chelsea leaked 15 set-piece goals last season, joint second-worst in the Premier League after Everton with 16 (Whoscored).
Lampard said he did not like to make a comparison to his playing days, but they did not have to work much on set-piece because of a few players.
“Mainly John Terry, Gary Cahill, Didier Drogba, Michael Ballack and [Branislav] Ivanovic. You’d stick it in an area and they would defend it or score goals,” he added.
Lampard also pointed out how Virgil van Dijk’s arrival has solved Liverpool’s set-piece problem after having similar set-piece problems a few seasons ago.
“They signed Virgil van Dijk and he heads out everything,” the former England international said.
“There’s a huge relation to personnel and if you don’t have that size, the main thing is trying to compete as hard as you can and making it difficult for other teams to score.
“But I’m not making excuses because we haven’t done that well enough and that has to improve.
“When you look at who you might bring in with the balance of the squad, it is certainly something to take into account.”
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