New boss Frank Lampard has taken charge of his first training session as the new Chelsea manager on their pre-season trip to Ireland.
The club legend and his squad jetted to the Emerald Isle earlier on Friday and he wasted no time in taking a look at his players in action with a few drills in Maynooth, a small university town in north County Kildare. Lampard couldn’t resist the temptation to get involved himself and the former midfielder was pictured passing the ball and putting himself in the thick of it.
The 41-year-old is known to favour youth and the likes of Ethan Ampadu, Trevoh Chalobah and Lewis Baker were no doubt eager to showcase their talents to the man in charge. It was a fair day in Ireland with pristine training pitches at Carton House, a carefully chosen facility ahead of the first pre-season matches.
The location is just 14 miles from Dublin and boasts a championship golf course accompanying the lavish on-site hotel. Lampard and Co will be spending the next few days in Ireland getting miles in the legs before the first clash of his reign against Bohemians on Wednesday then St Patrick’s Athletic next Saturday. The club’s all-time leading scorer was kitted out in a white tracksuit top and navy bottoms with his boots on for an occasional intervention.
CHELSEA TRAINING SQUAD IN IRELAND: Caballero, Azpilicueta, Zappacosta, Zouma, Ampadu, Drinkwater, Bakayoko, Kenedy, Pedro, Batshuayi, Baker, Palmer, Chalobah, Sterling, Piazon, Tomori, Cumming, Guehi, Gallagher, Ugbo, Gilmour, Maatsen The players appeared to be completing small-sided drills with a focus on quick movement and precise passes having landed in Dublin earlier in the day.
After the speculation over Lampard’s appointment, experienced campaigners such as Cesar Azipilicueta, Michy Batshuayi, and Pedro, all of whom are involved in the training squad, were able to see how the new boss likes to work having spent just one season under Maurizio Sarri before he departed for Juventus. One of Lampard’s first priorities is securing the players he views as key members of his Chelsea side, starting with Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Lampard implemented an attractive style of football in the Championship last season with the Rams and the first pre-season games may indicate if that is the blueprint he will stick to in the coming season with Chelsea.