"Kepa must be strong, that is what elite athletes are"
Frank Lampard spoke at a press conference about Chelsea's 3-3 draw with Southampton. Timo Werner underperformed in a match where Chelsea once again paid the price for Kepa Arrizabalaga's errors.
The Blues were winning 2-0 on the half-hour mark and Danny Ings reduced the gap before half-time. In the second half the tables turned and indecision between the keeper and defender led to a Southampton goal.
Questioned about the error, Lampard wanted to talk about it as a group. "It's a mistake we should have avoided. We cannot concede those goals," said the London coach, who had words for the Spanish goalkeeper.
"Kepa must be strong, that is what elite sportsmen and goalkeepers do. He has to deal with it," he argued about the pressure on the player, over his mistakes and the competition he has in goal with Mendy and Caballero.
In spite of the bluntness of Lampard's statement, the manager wanted to extend an olive branch to him and to give him encouragement: "He will have all my support and his teammates'. It's a shame, because he made some great stops".
Even so, he regretted that all this overshadowed a great start to the game: "It had been the best moment of the season so far. My message at half-time was that the goal should not change anything, but we never played at the same level in the second half. We can do better. We need to be more solid and individual mistakes give opportunities to other teams".