Just like anyone else, Chelsea’s boss Frank Lampard cannot wait for the premier league season to resume and bounce back into action after the postponement that was triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’re all aware of the nation’s desire to get football back on because of what it means the escapism and how we love our football, I’m also very aware of the obstacles that people will have to go through,” he told BT Sports, “I’m certainly not pointing fingers, I think we’re all working in the same direction; we want it back” he added.
Frank then went ahead to raise concerns about the health of both players and staff in case the league would return.
He believes the league cannot return without any guarantee for their health. “But of course, health and safety comes first, now all the steps to try and get that in place have got to be the important thing because we cannot risk the health of players and staffs who are working in Football, we can’t” he emphasized, and we cannot agree with him less.
The United Kingdom has confirmed 182,000 cases at the moment with about 28,000 deaths and tests are being carried out daily if the league returns, how will the social distancing measure be carried out to curb the spread? How long would it take for each player to be tested? All these should be put into serious consideration before the league returns.
Lampard’s four major concerns
Frank Lampard also had his questions and suggestions regarding the resume. He has raised four significant concerns that he believes must be dealt with before anything else.
- One of the concerns he raised was test taking away from the NHS. If the government agrees, the plan is to resume the season in June and stage matches behind closed doors at neutral grounds, players will be tested twice a week, meaning there will be over 10,000 tests conducted between the start of training and the end of the season.
Lampard is not against the idea, but he thinks it will be just unfair if it precedes over those working on the front line for the NHS. “The other issue I suppose is when we talk about the testing that we’re going to be doing, I think we have about 70 or 80 staffs at Cobham minimum of we’re going to restart the training”, “And if we’re going to test regularly, that’s fine, but when we look around the world I don’t know the testing numbers for the NHS, and care workers and people that are doing these incredible roles and incredible jobs over the last two months or so.
“I don’t think it would sit well, not just with me, but with anybody if we didn’t make sure that people are getting tested on that frontline.
“So, I think that’s important for football to take its place.”
- Social distancing. As stated above, how will the social distancing law be carried out? Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero raised concerns about the fear of he and his colleagues feel about putting both themselves and their families in danger of the infection when they returned to training.
The target date of return to training is May 18, what did Lampard think about this? He believes the country as a whole is practicing social distancing so well but is skeptical about returning and risking the lives of him and his colleagues.
- Neutral venues and integrity. The league teams have agreed to use neutral stadiums which goes to say that no club will play at their stadium, a decision that was taken to try to bring equality amongst the teams in this unfortunate times, a factor Lampard thinks will bring integrity problems with home advantage now wiped out
- Players whose contract will expire in June are at a significant loss. FIFA’s legal director Emilio Garcia Silver revealed that the chiefs would refuse to ratify any possible attempts to register with another club at least until the 2019-20 season is over. Chelsea’s Willian, Pedro, and Olivier Giroud will all be out of contract next month, and the blue’s boss thinks his squad depth will be empty and “so there are many conversations to think” he said.