Boss Lampard stands by keeper decision

Frank Lampard insisted his Chelsea side must remain “competitive” after he dropped Kepa Arrizabalaga for the draw with Leicester City.

The Blues boss handed goalkeeper Willy Caballero first league start of the campaign in place of the 25-year-old, whose performances have been criticised this season.

He hinted at it not being an easy decision to make, particularly against a team vying for a Champions League spot, but felt comfortable with having Caballero between the sticks.

Lampard said: “You make decisions every week, and every day sometimes, in this job and no decision is easy as such.

“When it comes to a goalkeeper you probably do give it a little bit more thought and a bit more time, especially, I suppose, if someone seems to be the designated number one, but that can’t be the end of the story. We have to be competitive.

“Willy trains well, he acts well, he played well against Hull [in the FA Cup] last week and I decided to stick with him.”

Lampard also kept Olivier Giroud at home for the trip up to Leicester after the striker was heavily linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge during the January transfer window.

The France international and former Arsenal forward garnered interest from several clubs, including Inter Milan and Tottenham Hotspur, but ended up staying put.

Asked why Giroud was not involved, Lampard added: “He has had a few days where a lot of scrutiny has been on him, and around him, so I think it was a case of travelling without him. We all go away now for a week, away from each other, which is probably what’s needed for everyone, and then we come back and work hard.

“Olivier is here. If he shows himself in training, because that’s how I pick the team generally, then he will get his opportunities.”