Lampard singles out two Chelsea stars for praise after Champions League heroics

Frank Lampard said he was “proud” of Chelsea’s achievement of finishing in the top four but praised the players rather than taking personal glory.

They are now in the Champions League next season despite being under a transfer ban last summer when some of their rivals spent big in the market.

Chelsea boss Lampard said: “I'm very pleased. As much as I would like to start singing my own praises, it’s down to the players and what they have done this season.

“There have been outstanding contributions of players, the likes of Kovacic and Giroud. They’ve all come together for what we’ve achieved together as a group. It makes me very proud.

“Obviously we want to be challenging for the title but you have to put brackets around that and know that it takes time.

“But even the likes of Tottenham and Arsenal spent north of £100m last summer and for us to finish in the top four is a big achievement.”

Lampard praised the contributions of goalscorer Olivier Giroud and Mason Mount and tipped the England midfielder to get even better after his man of the match display as he also provided an assist.

"He can definitely get better because he is so young. When a player makes his breakthrough year and plays consistently then people treat them older than they are. You saw his technique on the free-kick. Only top players can do that,” said Lampard.

"Really pleased, Oli has to take all the credit from Jan onwards. He wasn't playing a lot, Tammy Abraham played a lot. I was never unaware of Oli's talents but that was just the circumstance of the time."

Lampard said it had been a learning curve in his first season as a Premier League manager but believes he is improving all of the time.

"At Derby, made me realise it was the role I wanted to be in. In the media, it didn't grab me up,” said Lampard.

“When you step in Chelsea, the demands are huge to win week-in, week-out and that's pretty tough. I'm obsessive in the way I work and I have learned to get the balance right.”

Lampard also praised Pedro who is leaving Chelsea on a free to join Roma. Lampard added: ”On another note, I want to talk about Pedro. He has played his last game for the club and he has been serenaded in the dressing room.”

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