Lampard: Kepa ‘has to be strong enough’ after latest Chelsea mistake

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says Kepa Arrizabalaga “has to be strong enough” to overcome his run of poor form, after the Spaniard dropped another clanger in Saturday’s 3-3 draw against Southampton.

Kepa has been surpassed as Lampard’s no.1 by summer signing Edouard Mendy but with the Senegalese out injured was recalled to the staring XI for the clash with the Saints.

The Blues had been leading 2-0 midway through the first-half, but Kepa’s bizarre attempt to deal with Kurt Zouma’s backpass allowed Che Adams to make it 2-2, after Danny Ings had halved the deficit.

Mendy’s injury is not long-term but Kepa may still be called upon in the coming weeks and Lampard says he has to grind his way out of his current rut.

“He has to be strong enough,” Lampard said. “That’s part of the job were in playing top level elite sport. The goalkeeper and their role means they really have to do that.

(Pool via REUTERS)

“He’ll fell the support of myself and his teammates and it’s unfortunate because he did make some good saves today.

“He has to keep working. There’s only one way through those moments and that’s hard work and feeling the support of everyone around you.

“He makes two really good saves in the match but of course people eyes are drawn to the second goal, I understand that, and it wasn’t just Kepa involved.”

The bright point for Lampard was the performance of Timo Werner, who scored his first Premier League goals with a terrific first-half double.

“[They were] really good individual goals in terms of how made for himself,” Lampard added. “He looked sharp, our combination play was really sharp.

“Getting those goals will be great for him in terms of his confidence, his first Premier League goals, and we’ll see more of that for him.”

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