Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has been accused of making a “desperate” decision by naming Petr Cech as a reserve in his Premier League squad. Clubs finalised their squads for the first half of the Premier League season last week with the biggest surprise of all coming at Stamford Bridge.
Frank Lampard was clearly unhappy with his goalkeeping options last season and the club brought in Edouard Mendy to help alleviate those issues.
Kepa Arrizabalaga and Willy Caballero remain at the club and are seen as the back-up options but Lampard felt the need to name a surprising fourth goalkeeper to his squad.
Cech, who retired from football in 2019, is currently the club’s technical and performance adviser.
He was said to be instrumental in Chelsea ultimately pursuing a move for Mendy in the summer.
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But the 38-year-old has been included in the Blues’ Premier League squad, with Lampard stating it was a “no-brainer”.
“It’s definitely not done for the romance. Pete enjoys the training, that’s how he is,” Lampard said.
“With Pete, it’s something I wouldn’t expect to happen, but with how fit he is if we were in crisis we couldn’t have anyone better than Petr Cech around.
“I don’t expect him to play, but nobody expected what’s happened in the last six or seven months, so that would explain why he’s in there.
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“We had a space this year, and Covid makes this a year like no other. He’s very fit, he’s still relatively young, and he finished playing when he possibly could have carried on.
“It’s a total no-brainer to have him in the squad.”
However, former Chelsea star Alan Hudson was extremely critical of the controversial decision.
“Mendy looks the real deal which will give the defenders more confidence – although they shouldn’t have to rely on the ‘keeper,” Hudson told CaughtOffside.
“However, Mendy has given Frank one less headache, therefore he can now forget that and work on other areas.
“He brought Cech in because of his vast experience and could not buy another ‘keeper … It goes to show just how desperate Frank is, and like if John Terry had been his assistant Frank would be putting him back in after all the calamity defending by their centre-backs.”
Chelsea are back in action on Wednesday when they take on Krasnodar in the Champions League.
After a strong performance to draw 0-0 with Sevilla in their opening group game, Chelsea will be hoping to get off the mark with all three points.
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