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Champions League Press Conference: Lampard on Valencia, N’Golo Kante injury and Tammy Abraham

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01 January 1970 - 20:12

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The Champions League group stage returns this week, with Chelsea hosting Valencia at Stamford Bridge.

Frank Lampard’s men are in the competition for the first time since 2017/18.

Ahead of the game, the Blues boss Frank Lampard has faced the press.

Lampard claimed, Antonio Rudiger is injured and provided team news update: “Toni is injured. Bothered a small groin problem, he will have a scan. James, Hudson-Odoi and Kante fit, but not match fit. They might have another game in the U23s, N’Golo a bit of time. Everyone else fits.”

The Blues boss also spoke about Tammy Abraham, who scored three goals in Chelsea’s 5-2 victory over Wolves.

“I never had clear expectations in him, only that I trusted him. I know a lot was made of the ban, but I felt it was the right time for him at this club anyway. He is in a good place and can improve even more,” Lampard said and about the national team, he added, “It is not a question for me. I have spoken about Tammy before; I don’t want to step on Tammy’s toes”.

Lampard is leading Chelsea in the Champions League for the first time: “I will be proud to do it. I had some incredible nights in the Champions League, and some bad ones. It’s the ultimate in club football. There is something about Stamford Bridge, Champions League football and that music. I will be proud to do it.”

About the difference of Champions League, he added: “I haven’t spoken to them in detail about it. It is different, the main thing is that the concentration levels throughout the game have to be spot on. The different level can surprise you. It will be that focus, will be the main point”

Chelsea will play with Valencia and on their opponents, the Blues boss said: “I haven’t spoken to them in detail about it. It is different, the main thing is that the concentration levels throughout the game have to be spot on. The different level can surprise you. It will be that focus, will be the main point. I did see the match,(against Barcelona) it’s not always easy to analyse a match against Barcelona. We have looked at other games, but it’s difficult when there is a new manager. I am expecting a team who is hard to break down, dangerous on the counter-attacks and a tough match.”

Lampard revealed the targets for this year’s Champions League.

“I did see the match, it’s not always easy to analyse a match against Barcelona. We have looked at other games, but it’s difficult when there is a new manager. I am expecting a team who is hard to break down, dangerous on the counter-attacks and a tough match,” the boss concluded.

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