Naturally disappointed not to add to his large winners’ medal haul with a UEFA Super Cup victory on Friday evening, Frank Lampard still saw good signs for the near future.
The vice-captain was in the heart of midfield in Prague, as he has been in every game this season, and it was the performance of younger players around him that especially gave him heart.
‘They were very good, the attacking players that we’ve got,’ Lampard said, ‘and both goals showed Eden Hazard is a special talent.
‘He created the first and scored the second and the determination in the team, the way we played, we have that spirit in us which we have never lost and we have that youth. It will take a bit of time but I don’t think it will take long if we put our minds to it. I think we will be very strong very soon.
‘There is a great identity about Jose Mourinho’s teams,’ he added.
‘You see the spirit and the quality and the will to win and we always had that with him before, and I think we are going to have it again.’
With Samuel Eto’o having signed for Chelsea while the team were in the Czech Republic preparing to face Bayern Munich, many eyes were on Fernando Torres who was selected as the centre-forward to start the game.
‘He was sharp, he worked his socks off, chasing people from behind and there was a great finish and a couple of other little chances he created for himself,’ noted Lampard.
‘We need competition and we need strikers at the club. We went a bit thin on strikers last year to be honest and in a long season it is tough. We have brought in Eto’o who has great quality, we have Lukaku who had a fantastic season last year, and I feel for him after this game, but he is going to be a great striker.’
On the penalty shoot-out defeat against the European Champions who equalised in the final seconds of extra time, Lampard said it was the quality of Chelsea’s display that made the nature of the loss so difficult to stomach.
‘They had chances, but they always will do, and when you play Bayern with 10 men for a big slice of the game and you take the lead again, hit the bar and have chances, I think we played a great game.
‘With 10 men our desire to take the lead and stay in the lead was unbelievable.
‘It was a bit reminiscent of the Champions League final and the Barcelona games at times but when they are sticking balls in the box, it is hard to get out with 10 men. I don’t mind saying they deserved it by keeping going but when you get that close it is frustrating.’