Transfer ban a 'blessing in disguise' for Lampard
Frank Lampard claims Chelsea's transfer ban could be a "blessing in disguise" because it will enable him to utilise the younger stars.
The Blues are banned from signing players during the next two transfer windows - until the end of January 2020 - but Lampard said on his side's pre-season tour in Japan that he was happy with the squad he has got.
"I think I've inherited very good players," the former Derby manager said on Sky Sports. "We can't bring any players in, we know that - this year - but I don't need new players.
"I'm very happy with the squad and determined for us to be successful."
Chelsea's appeal against a transfer embargo for breaching rules in relation to signing youth players was turned down by FIFA in May, but Lampard is focused solely on preparing his squad.
"I know the club very well, I know the players very well. I have my own way that I want to work with the players," he added.
"I have to say, in the one week that we've been training, I've been very happy with the attitude and the qualities of the players.
"So my job now is to work hard in pre-season with them.
"I like my teams to play with a lot of energy, a lot of speed - with and without the ball, so if we lose the ball I want to win it back as quickly as we can.
"When we have the ball I want to move it quickly and create chances to win games and feel like we're playing football we enjoy."
Lampard said it was a "blessing in disguise" that the club would not be involved in the transfer window and that he was excited by the young talent at his disposal.
"Everybody knows I have a keen eye for the younger players that the academy has produced and we now have a batch of them who are fighting to get in the first team," he said.
"But to be absolutely clear, they now have to make the difference. It's a pathway that's given to them and now they have to be the ones who play well enough to get into the team.
"I don't care about age, I just care about performance and how people train. It's up to those young players to show what they can do."
Craig Smithson is a journalist with over two decades of experience at the keyboard. A life-long Middlesbrough fan, Craig has an in-depth knowledge of all football and is also a keen fan of boxing amongst other sports.