Chelsea play Russian side Krasnodar on Wednesday evening in their second UEFA Champions’ League group stage game this season. Chelsea drew 0-0 with reigning Europa League winners Sevilla in their opening group stage game this season in what was an uninspiring performance from Frank Lampard’s side.
Chelsea are under pressure to get the win in Russia, majorly down to their form in the Premier League so far this season. The London side have only won two league games this season and have just one win in their last four league games.
They’ve shown no qualms about scoring goals, scoring three goals or more in four of their league games but it’s the recurring issue of conceding goals that is the glaring problem for Chelsea this season. They’ve conceded nine goals this season in just six games but the defensive reinforcements they bought in the summer I believe will improve their defence given time needed to gel with each other as a defensive unit.
That pressure I talk about is justified in my opinion, this is Lampard’s second year in charge, yet he’s been unable to fix their defensive issues which is reaching a year and a half in turmoil.
Is Lampard Perceived Differently?
Lampard himself said in his pre-match press conference that he feels he’s treated differently being the only English manager of the ‘Big Six’ clubs.
“I think possibly, yes; I think when I got this job a lot of people were questioning me getting the job.
“A lot of people told me ‘are you sure you want to take it’ because of maybe opinion. And I think when sometimes people can be very quick to form opinions straight away, for whatever reason, and being a young English manager with one year at Derby some of that I understood.
“But at the same time, I think sometimes we just have to judge people on face value, like we do judge any manager; it doesn’t matter where you’re from, I think all managers should be judged the same.
“I don’t feel the responsibility for the English managers’ union, but I was surprised myself when I was told that stat last week, the great Bobby Robson to be the only other English manager to have done it,” said Lampard.
“There was quite a long time when I used to hear about how English managers couldn’t get jobs in the Premier League, and there was a merry-go-round and this sort of thing.
“But I actually think it’s slightly different now, I think sometimes now we’re seeing English managers showing their qualities within the game, throughout the Premier League, throughout the Championship, throughout the leagues.
Chelsea Odds for Match Day: Day Two
Despite finishing third in the Russian Premier League last season, Krasnodar have been pretty ordinary this season, sitting 12th in the league, with five wins, three draws and four losses after 12 games.
They did however earn a point in their opening Champions League fixture away to Rennes in a 1-1 draw.
Despite Chelsea’s troubles, I back them to get a 3-1 win away from home.
Sportsbooks odds on a Chelsea win open at -300. Odds on a Krasnodar home win open at +700. Odds on a draw between the two sides open at +450.