• Premier League

Lampard: Abraham’s strong form a result of hard work

Tammy Abraham, Chelsea, Premier League, Southampton
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Frank Lampard heaped praise on Tammy Abraham after the striker scored again during Chelsea’s 4-1 Premier League win at Southampton.

After suffering a three-match scoreless run, Lampard’s number one striker Abraham has now found the back of the net in his last two outings for Chelsea.

The 22-year-old delivered a Man of the Match display on Sunday by tormenting Southampton all afternoon. While he missed an early chance, Abraham made no mistakes when he lobbed the ball over Angus Gunn to put Chelsea ahead.

Following goals from Mason Mount and N’Golo Kante, Blues fans gave Abraham a standing ovation when Lampard substituted him for Michy Batshuayi.

“You talk about when people are in good form, things happen for them or they generally have moments,” the Chelsea boss told reporters.

“For me, that comes from how Tammy has handled himself all season from the early moments of pre-season and the start of the season when people were questioning him in different ways.

“It’s the work ethic behind the scenes that gets him in such good nick. He’s not just an incredible handful for defenders – he’s running them, he’s holding the ball up, he’s controlling it, he’s got good feet – he’s also getting his goals, which is brilliant for him.

“I trusted in Tammy at the start of the season. I felt it was his time to come back to Chelsea.

“I know people will talk about the circumstances [of the transfer ban], but he also has Olivier Giroud, who’s a World Cup winner, and also Batshuayi who’s a top-class Premier League striker in my opinion as well.

“He’s made the position his own in the short-term now. He has to keep that going because competition is key and over the course of the season we’ll need everybody.

“But he has deserved the great week he has had. He has deserved the great start to the season he has had and I will keep on him, because I want more.”

Lampard also played down fears of the knock Abraham sustained during the latter stages of the game.

The England international is the Premier League’s top scorer alongside Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero on eight goals in as many games.

Batshuayi, meanwhile, scored the fourth goal to seal a convincing 4-1 win for Chelsea at St Mary’s.

Lampard’s men, therefore, have moved up to fifth-place in the Premier League on 14 points, with Leicester City only ahead in fourth on goal difference.

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