Tammy Abraham

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Giroud upset with reserve role at Chelsea

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Olivier Giroud does not look back on his transfer to Chelsea and wish he had done things differently, but that doesn’t mean things are all sunshine and roses for the 33-year-old.

Giroud, who moved to Chelsea from Arsenal in the winter of 2018 after six years with the Gunners, has played just 43 times in the Premier League, averaging just 35 minutes per appearance. That has him frustrated, hoping to prove his loyalty to the club and work harder than the other options up front.

“I had competitors in attack – [Alvaro] Morata, [Gonzalo] Higuain, who ended up leaving,” Giroud said. “I won at the end: I played the final of the FA Cup in 2018 and the [Europa League] final in 2019. Once again, I’m starting the year in a difficult situation. But as my brother says, I have always built myself in the face of adversity.”

Giroud is trying to be smart about how he approaches the competition for time with the likes of Tammy Abraham and Michy Batshuayi, but he says it is emotionally taxing.

“You do not have to be fatalistic in certain situations,” Giroud says about keeping a level head. “I have always been respectful and humble. Even if I do not agree with the coach, I do not criticize him. But in myself, I cannot accept it because I know what I’m worth on a pitch.”

The French international has made just three league appearances this season, mostly thanks to Abraham’s scalding form. Abraham, still just 22 years old, has snatched his opportunity for first-team minutes with eight goals in eight games to start the campaign. That has left Giroud on the sidelines for each of the last five league games, missing out on a spot in the matchday squad altogether for the last three.

Despite his struggles at the club level, Giroud has maintained his place in the French national team, missing just five matches of France’s last 64 games, including 37 of the last 39.

Chelsea youngster Mason Mount set for first England start

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According to a number of reports from England, young Chelsea talent Mason Mount is readying for his first international start as England gets set to face the Czech Republic in Euro 2020 qualification on Friday.

Mount has two international caps to his name, having come off the bench against Bulgaria and Kosovo in the last international break. He will now make his full debut, a well-earned reward for a stellar Premier League season thus far. The 20-year-old has scored four goals and assisted another through the first eight games of the season and has been one of the most positive attacking influences at Stanford Bridge alongside fellow academy graduate Tammy Abraham.

“Nothing I’ve seen surprises me at all,” England manager Gareth Southgate said of Mount’s play during his pre-match press conference on Thursday. “We’ve had him marked as a player from the first time I saw him at St. George’s [Park]. Chelsea would be the same on that, I think, but of course he’s now been able to have the opportunity to play in the Premier League and display that against top teams. I think you saw his penalty in the Super Cup, [that] was a nice cameo of what he’s about, really.”

Mount is the beneficiary of the withdrawal of James Maddison, who departed the England squad due to an illness, still unable to make his international debut. He will start ahead of Chelsea teammate Ross Barkley, whom Mount has supplanted as the starting attacking midfielder at Stamford Bridge. “I don’t think it matters what our starting three is [in attack],” Southgate said at the press conference while discussing the importance of having depth. “Clearly, at the moment Raheem [Sterling] and Harry [Kane], their numbers are incredible and the consistency of their performance is, but the rest can be down to performance at any given time.”

Mount’s 7.40 WhoScored rating so far through the first eight games of the Premier League season puts him in the top 20 of players in the league and third among English talents behind Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling and his Blues teammate Abraham. His 2.1 key passes per game ranks 13th in the league behind high-volume players like Kevin De Bruyne, Gylfi Sigurdsson, and Jack Grealish.

The 20-year-old is set to start alongside fellow youngster Jadon Sancho who is reportedly readying for another spot in the lineup after scoring a brace against Kosovo his last time out to mark his first international goals. Sancho also started against the Czech Republic in the reverse fixture back in March, a 5-0 rout that saw him assist Sterling’s 24th minute opener.

Premier League player Power Rankings

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Our new Premier League player Power Rankings have landed and plenty of stars from Liverpool, Chelsea, Aston Villa and Wolves feature heavily.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Matchweek eight provided plenty of shock results and our rankings reflect that with 15 new entries.

Remember: this is a list of the top 20 performing players right now in the Premier League. If they didn’t play in the last matchweek, they aren’t getting in this list!

Let us know in the comments section below if you agree with the selections.


1. Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea) – New entry
2. Aaron Connolly (Brighton) – New entry
3. Jorginho (Chelsea) – Up 3
4. Tammy Abraham (Chelsea) – New entry
5. Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – New entry
6. Matt Longstaff (Newcastle) – New entry
7. Adama Traore (Wolves) – New entry
8. John McGinn (Aston Villa) – Up 11
9. Aaron Mooy (Brighton) – New entry
10. Virgil Van Dijk (Liverpool) – Even
11. Fikayo Tomori (Chelsea) – Even
12. Willy Boly (Wolves) – New entry
13. Rui Patricio (Wolves) – New entry
14. Calum Chambers (Arsenal) – New entry
15. Dean Henderson (Sheffield United) – New entry
16. Wilfried Ndidi (Leicester) – Down 4
17. Gary Cahill (Crystal Palace) – New entry
18. Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) – New entry
19. Jeff Hendrick (Burnley) – New entry
20. Wesley (Aston Villa) – New entry

Report: Chelsea linked with $230 million move for Neymar

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Chelsea have been linked with a move for Neymar as soon as their transfer ban ends in the summer.

Spanish outlet Don Balon say the Blues want to sign Neymar for $230 million and after an entire year of not spending, Chelsea will certainly have some cash in the bank. But will they really have that much to spend?

Neymar, 27, wanted to leave Paris Saint-Germain this summer but his move to Barcelona or Real Madrid didn’t materialize and the Brazilian superstar is now lambasted by his own fans in the French capital.

It’s clear his move to PSG hasn’t quite worked out, as his main aim was to lead PSG to the UEFA Champions League title. That hasn’t happened and in his own words every PSG home game is now ‘like an away game’ as banners and chants against him are commonplace.

Would Frank Lampard and Chelsea want Neymar at Stamford Bridge?

There’s no doubting his sensational talent and his box office name will certainly generate plenty of extra income and cover a large chunk of the transfer fee and wages. However, Chelsea may struggle to fit in Neymar’s wage demands when it comes to financial fair play.

Per the report, it says that N’Golo Kante could be sold to Real Madrid to help finance the move for Neymar, which would not be popular among Chelsea fans. And even if you take the wages of Willian and Pedro out of the equation, both of whom could leave next summer, this would still take a huge financial package from owner Roman Abramovich. The fact Chelsea’s Russian owner is currently unable to be in the UK has seen spending diminish in recent seasons, but having a year of savings in the bank should help.

Neymar would give the Blues an x-factor and would be the replacement for Eden Hazard, but what would that mean for youngsters Tammy Abraham, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount?

This doesn’t really fit in with Chelsea’s model of promoting youngsters, but that was probably only a short-term thing anyway as they had to deal with FIFA’s transfer ban.

With money in the bank, Chelsea could probably afford Neymar. But would bringing him to Stamford Bridge, and everything else that comes with signing him, be worth it?

On the pitch he will probably scored 25-30 goals per season and be a huge hit, but off the pitch it has often been another story.

Can we picture Neymar speeding down Chelsea’s Kings Road in his Ferrari after going for a Full English Breakfast on a Wednesday morning? The first part is definitely on brand…

Lampard on Pulisic, Chelsea’s win at Southampton

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SOUTHAMPTON — Frank Lampard was a happy man as Chelsea secured a fourth-straight win in all competitions by beating Southampton 4-1 in the Premier League on Sunday.

[ MORE: How did Pulisic perform?

USMNT star Christian Pulisic came off the bench for his first PL minutes since Aug. 31 and the Pennsylvanian playmaker grabbed an impressive assist in his cameo display.

Asked by Sky Sports about the contributions of Chelsea’s entire squad, Lampard reserved special praise for Michy Batshuayi and Pulisic as they combined for their fourth goal at St Mary’s.

“It is and I get asked weekly ‘why is he not in the squad?’ and ‘why is he on the bench?’ when it comes to certain players. We need all of the players. You need the contribution of Michy coming on and getting his goal. He’s been training really well. Christian coming on with a great assist for the goal. Those players, absolutely we need them as the games come thick and fast. At the moment we are going well and keeping a similar core of the team. But we are going to need everyone and that means training at a level and being happy as a complete group when we come away and get a result like this.” It is a long old season and Chelsea are in the League Cup, UEFA Champions League FA Cup and will be pushing for a top four finish in the PL. Lampard will need his entire squad and he needs to keep as many of them happy as he can.

Pulisic and Batshuayi performed well when they came on and that’s great news for Lampard and Chelsea, as he has so many options in attacking areas.

Willian, Mason Mount, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Tammy Abraham have the starting shirts for now, but Pulisic, Pedro and Batshuayi are banging on the door.

Chelsea are gathering momentum under Lampard and this young side are growing up fast as we enter the winter months.

They are fifth in the PL and are back on track in Europe as early defensive struggles haven’t quite evaporated, but this Chelsea side are looking well suit compared to Tottenham, Arsenal and Man United in terms of pushing for a top four finish this season.