Lampard wary of threat from United

Frank Lampard has no doubt Chelsea will face a strong challenge from Manchester United in the final stages of the battle for a top-four finish.

Speaking before United beat Manchester City on Sunday, Blues boss Lampard played down suggestions his side are now firm favourites to finish fourth.

United are just three points behind and Lampard believes the likes of Wolves and Sheffield United are also still strong contenders.

“There’s still a long way to go,” Lampard said after Sunday’s 4-0 thrashing of Everton.

“Manchester United are in great form themselves. Their impactful acquisitions in January have given them a nice spring in their step, so they’re going to challenge.

“So are quite a few teams. It’s still close. We have to fight until the end for it.”

Chelsea have stumbled at times at home this season but were far too strong for Everton at Stamford Bridge.

Mason Mount, Pedro and Willian scored before Olivier Giroud got the fourth goal to cap a fine display.

Giroud was expected to leave Chelsea in January but ended up staying and has been leading the attack in the absence of the injured Tammy Abraham.

“When you have Ollie, you know his attributes and you work around that,” said Lampard.

“He’s playing really well, is fantastic in the dressing room and throughout a difficult time January he was brilliant. I’ve got complete respect for him for that.

“Now he’s playing really well on the pitch. And he’s a personality. We need that until the end (of the season).”