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Frank Lampard will face 'completely different' pressure with Chelsea signings next season, says Darren Bent

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 02/08/2020 Matt Davies
Frank Lampard standing in front of a crowd © Provided by Evening Standard

Frank Lampard will face a "completely different" type of pressure with his new Chelsea signings after being praised for being "forced" to play his academy players this season, believes Darren Bent.

The former Blues midfielder has enjoyed a largely successful debut season in charge, securing Champions League football while taking Chelsea to the FA Cup final.

The 42-year-old did so without former talisman Eden Hazard, who left for Real Madrid in the summer, with Chelsea unable to replace the Belgian due to their two-window transfer ban - which was eventually reduced to one window.

Saturday's loss to Arsenal placed a slight dampener on the campaign, however, with Chelsea also finishing with fewer points and one place lower in the Premier League table (fourth) than Maurizio Sarri achieved last season.

But Chelsea have already been busy in the market, securing both Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech with Kai Havertz also on Lampard's radar.

And while Bent believes that Lampard has received widespread praise for his use of youth players throughout his debut campaign, he questions whether that will remain the case next season.

"A lot of people this season have lauded Frank Lampard for the job he's done, bringing through some of the youngsters," Bent said on talkSPORT. "I think he's had about eight academy graduates.

"But remember, he was forced to do this. I think, at times, people have made a lot of excuses for him, saying: 'Look at the job he's done because he couldn't buy any players, they've had to use youth players'.

"To be fair, he's given them an opportunity and they've taken them. But I do think that next season's going to be completely different.

"Are they going to go out and sign all these players? Will the youth players get more of an opportunity next season? That's going to be pressure in itself.

"People will say: 'You were forced to do it last season; where are the youngsters next season when there is an open chequebook and they can sign who they want?'"

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