Lampard reveals plan for Tomori and how Werner is coping centrally

Tomori has played in four games this season, the most recent and first since September when he came on during last weekend’s FA Cup win over Morecambe. It was also the game when Timo Werner put his wait for a goal behind him by netting the second in the 4-0 win, and having played the German as the central striker in the last two games, Lampard shared his thoughts on how that is working out.

‘With Timo through the middle, it is an area of the pitch that he clearly likes to start from,’ he said.

‘In Leipzig and for Germany he has played centrally. He has played on the left, he has played as a lone striker and he has played as one of two strikers, so I certainly see how there is room for manoeuvre in terms of how you can use Timo.

‘When he plays centrally, we pride ourselves on being a hard-working team off the ball which means sometimes a lot of pressure high up the pitch and it is very normal for Timo and others who have come into this team in forward areas to take some time to get used to what my idea is, and what team-mates’ ideas are, because they haven’t had working time on the pitch, no doubt about that.  

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Reece James trains ahead of Fulham

The right-back missed our FA Cup win over Morecambe as he continued his recovery from injury, but has since returned to training and will hope to feature for the Blues at Craven Cottage on Saturday teatime.

Hakim Ziyech and Callum Hudson-Odoi were also involved in the session, while fellow wideman Christian Pulisic looked sharp.

Fresh from scoring at the weekend, German duo Timo Werner and Kai Havertz were pictured in action while youngster Tino Anjorin was also involved.

Take a look at the best images from today’s session below!

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Double celebration – Chelsea’s birthday scorers

In finding the net from 25 yards at Stamford Bridge against the League Two side, the England midfielder joined these other Chelsea players who in recent times have marked their special days with goals for the Blues

John Spencer 1995

John Spencer had a day to remember on 11 September 1995 when he marked his 25th birthday with a brace for Chelsea in a Premier League derby victory over West Ham United at Upton Park.

The Scot netted our second goal in the 33rd minute, finding the bottom corner with a sweetly struck effort from long range.

He required heavy bandaging on his head after a clash with Julian Dicks shortly afterwards but stayed on the pitch and was set up by Ruud Gullit to fire in his second of the game late on to seal a 3-1 victory.

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Foundation launch ‘Check-in with Chelsea’ programme

With the country in lockdown due to recent Covid-19 developments, most school children and their families have had to adapt again to learning remotely.

In response to this, the Foundation’s Education team have created a new ‘Check-in with Chelsea’ programme and have started delivering in schools this week.

The programme has been created to provide a check-in point for pupils, enabling them to join via our own virtual classrooms, with challenges themed around English, Maths, PSHE, STEM and Physical Activity and will be linked to a Chelsea FC men or women’s player along with a manager’s challenge!

Head of education Sam Gaskin-Kemp said: ‘We are delighted to have launched our new ‘Check-In with Chelsea’ programme which allows us to continue to support children and families during the current lockdown period in school or at home.

‘It is really important for us to be able to provide support where we can and continue to work with our communities through this fun and engaging programme.’

First up on the ‘Check-in with Chelsea’ programme this week was ‘Eriksson’s English Challenge’ with the task based around Chelsea Women’s captain Magda Eriksson.

Pupils were tasked with completing a match report and Blues defender Eriksson was on hand to deliver a personal message to those who had completed the challenge.

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Giroud’s hat-trick header named Chelsea’s December Goal of the Month

With Giroud’s perfect hat-trick against Sevilla taking more than half of all the votes cast, the Goal of the Month award was almost as comfortable a victory as the one in Spain.

As well as that second header by the Frenchman against Aston Villa, Giroud was also selected ahead of Christian Pulisic finishing off a lightning-quick counter-attack by Mateo Kovacic and Timo Werner to complete the scoring in our 3-1 win over Leeds United.

Our Women’s and Academy sides were also represented in the nominations, by Sam Kerr’s strike against Benfica following a pinpoint through-ball from Guro Reiten, and Jude Soonsup-Bell’s impressive solo effort against Manchester United in the Premier League 2.

Giroud is the fourth different player to win a Chelsea Goal of the Month award this season, joining Reece James (September, v Brighton), Timo Werner (October, v Southampton) and Callum Hudson-Odoi (November, v Rennes).

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FA Youth Cup temporarily suspended

The decision was confirmed in a statement from the FA this afternoon (Tuesday) and comes into immediate effect until further notice.

Chelsea’s Under-18s progressed into the fourth round of this season’s competition having defeated Barnsley 8-1 in December. Our next opponents will be the winners of the Cambridge United versus AFC Fylde tie, which was due to played this week. However, progression will now be halted until current UK Government lockdown restrictions are lifted.

The statement from the FA reads:

‘The FA can confirm its decision to temporarily suspend the 2020/21 FA Youth Cup and has discussed this with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport.

‘The health and wellbeing of players and staff are of paramount importance and The FA intends to resume the national competition once the UK Government’s current national COVID-19 lockdown concludes and it is deemed safer for clubs to travel.

‘The FA Youth Participation & Development Committee, which is responsible for management of the competition, will continue to review the situation and The FA will provide further updates at the earliest opportunity.

‘For the avoidance of doubt, all matches in The FA Youth Cup are now suspended with immediate effect until further notice.’

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Gilmour’s pitch perfect awareness honed through practise and watching Fabregas

Developed by the Chelsea FC Academy and launched back in August, Perfect Play has become the most downloaded football training app worldwide. It provides access to professional standard, world-class coaching for all, a grounding Gilmour himself has benefited from in person after arriving at Cobham at the age of 16.

‘The game gets quicker and more tactical in the Premier League so you always need to know where you are on the pitch,’ explains the teenager. 

‘It’s then about not taking too many chances, making sure you do things full of confidence, receive the ball with both feet and just trust your own ability.’

Few players have mastered the art of confident, clinical ball-playing in a Chelsea shirt over the years than Cesc Fabregas. The Spaniard was an artist with the sphere at his feet, making things look easy, but that perception of calmness personified was developed through years of experience in game understanding.

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Chelsea discover FA Cup fourth round and possible fifth round opponents

Should we overcome the Hatters at Stamford Bridge, we will travel to either Barnsley or Norwich in the fifth round, with that draw taking place a few minutes after the fourth round one tonight. 

We last played Luton in this competition in the semi-final in 1994, where two Gavin Peacock goals sent us through to our first FA Cup final in 24 years. 

Luton, who beat Reading in the third round, are currently 14th in the Championship. Barnsley and Norwich are also second-tier sides. 

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Chelsea Academy fixture update

Andy Myers’ development squad were due to face West Ham at Rush Green on Friday night, before Ed Brand’s Under-18s were scheduled to welcome Brighton & Hove Albion to Cobham on Saturday morning.

However, due to a number of positive Covid-19 cases being returned in recent testing of those age groups, all Academy activities have been suspended for this week. Those affected are currently all self-isolating in line with UK Government protocols.

The situation and timeline for return will be kept under review in the coming days and new dates for both postponed fixtures will be announced in due course. Due to the separate bubbles in place at Cobham, no other teams have been affected.

Elsewhere in the Academy, young striker Jude Soonsup-Bell has signed his first professional contact at the club.

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New loan move for Castillo

The Dutch left-back returned to his homeland in October with AZ Alkmaar, where he made his top-flight debut last month in a 2-2 draw at Utrecht, and now joins fellow Eredivisie side ADO Den Haag on loan until the end of 2020/21.

Castillo signed for Chelsea from Ajax in the summer of 2016, having captained both the Amsterdam club and the Netherlands at youth level.

He helped our Academy win the Under-18 Premier League and FA Youth Cup during his first year with the Blues, which included completing the scoring in our 9-2 thrashing of Tottenham in the latter competition.

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