Date published: Wednesday 23rd September 2020 10:38
Frank Lampard described it as the “first of many great nights” for Kai Havertz after the Chelsea midfielder scored his first hat-trick for the club.
Havertz’s early performances in the Premier League since making a £70m move from Bayer Leverkusen have been questioned by pundits recently.
However, he proved what he can do by getting off the mark in style in a 6-0 Carabao Cup win over Barnsley.
Havertz netted in the 28th, 55th and 65th minutes as he accounted for half of his club’s goals in their third round triumph.
While Havertz will face far tougher tests in the weeks ahead, boss Lampard insists it was vital for the German international to get that performance under his belt.
“It was a great exericse for him,” said Lampard. “Another game to see how we want to work off the ball, but also have freedom on the ball and combinations with Tammy [Abraham].
“It’s the first of many great nights for him.”
As Lampard hinted at, he was also pleased with Abraham’s contributions. The England striker was Chelsea’s top scorer last season, but the arrival of Timo Werner has added pressure on him.
However, Abraham got Chelsea’s first goal of the game to send a reminder of what he can do, before being replaced by Olivier Giroud late on.
Speaking of his striker options, Lampard said: “I was delighted for both strikers tonight. It gives us different options from last season for me, for sure.”
Lampard finds Silva presence ‘exciting’
At the other end of the pitch, Chelsea got their first glimpse of new signing Thiago Silva in action.
The Brazilian international helped them keep a clean sheet, and although he is still getting to grips with English, he led by example according to Lampard.
“It’s exciting for us,” the Blues boss said. “He has just had a weeks training with us.
“But he gave something off for us with a leader of authority. At the minute, the fact he can’t speak the language doesn’t matter too much.”
One defender who wasn’t involved was Antonio Rudiger, who has since become the subject of transfer speculation.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek also failed to make the cut, and he too could be on the move. However, Lampard said the pair would only leave if the conditions were right.
“They weren’t in the squad and that was just a choice,” he explained. “There may be movement, but don’t read too much in to them not being in the squad. It will have to be right for the club.”