Lampard on Chelsea duo’s future, injury news, possible signings and Kepa’s mistakes

Frank Lampard spoke at a news conference ahead of Chelsea’s game against Arsenal. Here’s some of what the Blues boss had to say.

On Reece James

“He’s got an injury to the back of his knee. It’s not as bad as it could have been, or we maybe thought. He’s in contention but it’s going to be a tight call.

“We’re going to give him another 24 hours to see if it settles down. It’s settled down pretty quickly so far.

“He had injuries with his ankle and I was concerned about that. When it wasn’t that, I was quite happy, and now it seems it’s not as bad as it could have been.

“I won’t absolutely count my chickens but hopefully he’ll be involved tomorrow. If not, for the weekend.”

On Marcos Alonso

“He’s fit and in the squad.”

On whether signings are imminent

“No, not absolutely imminent. We’re looking, but there’s nothing to tell you right-away.”

On whether Chelsea might sign Edinson Cavani

“He’s a great player. I played against him and I always loved his mentality and his attitude – and obviously his goalscoring record speaks for itself.

“I’m not absolutely aware of what the situation is. So we’ll see.

“He’s an experienced player, but so are many other players out there.

“We are young as a squad and we know about the transition, so the idea of bringing in experience is something I’m certainly not looking absolutely away from because sometimes I think the younger players need a bit of help and if that’s the case then that may help us.”

On whether he might make a short-term signing

“I think long-term in January is very difficult.

“If that’s difficult, then short-term is certainly something we would look at because I think there are issues that are pressing for this season, for us now to finish where we want to get to.

“So if you have to look short term then it’s something we are looking at.”

On Olivier Giroud and Victor Moses possibly joining Inter Milan

“With Ollie, there’s not much more to say than I’ve kept saying. There have been discussions and the idea that he may move on, but it needs to be right for everyone and it isn’t yet.

“On Victor Moses, he’s coming back from his loan with a view to going elsewhere and those talks are ongoing,”

On Kepa’s mistakes

“I’ll always defend players and if there are individual errors I think players are the first ones to hold their hands up.

“Goalkeeper is a difficult job because the spotlight is really on you individually.

“At times he’s made good saves for us this season and at times he’ll say he wants to do better.

“He is still relatively young as a goalkeeper and wants to improve, as he should do. I think he can improve as much as all the team.

“I’m sensitive to the fact that goalkeepers are under the microscope. I appreciate that can be tough.

“The only thing to do is to work hard, keep your head down and be humble about how you work.

“He’s a good goalkeeper. We know that. There have been times this season when he’s saved us points. There are times when we say ‘OK, is that an individual error or a team error?’ Sometimes the goalkeeper takes the brunt of what happens as a team.”

On Chelsea’s lack of goals

“From midfield we’ve had a fair share of goals – a few here and there. From wide areas I think we can get more.

“If you look at the successful teams over the last two, three or four seasons in the Premier League, the number of goals from wide areas have been pivotal in what they’ve produced, because it changes games.

“It’s not just to put it on them – I think we can have competition to try to score goals from all areas on the pitch.

“Our goal record probably doesn’t stack up terribly against other teams in the Premier League. It’s more that we are controlling a lot of possession and creating a lot of chances. It’s chance-conversion that’s the issue.”

On Arsenal

“They’re a good team with good players who can hurt you. You’ve seen a bit of a change since Arteta has been in, with some of their performances. We must be on-guard and be at our best.

“His effect was quick – quite sudden. I felt it when we played them. There was some small tactical changes. There’s maybe a boost that can come with a change of manager.

“I think they’re a good team and he’s a good coach who deserves some time and has already had an effect. I’m under no illusions about how hard the task will be.”