Chelsea boss Frank Lampard sends transfer message to Roman Abramovich with big decision | Football | Sport

Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard sent a clear transfer message to owner Roman Abramovich by leaving Kepa Arrizabalaga out of his starting XI for the last two matches.

Abramovich has gladly opened the chequebook so far this summer with over £80million being spent on Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner.

That total expenditure is expected to be doubled if the Blues are able to capture Bayer Leverkusen’s versatile midfielder Kai Havertz.

Lampard has been warned he must offload some stars before he is then allowed to strengthen his squad further.

The 42-year-old is keen to bring in defensive reinforcements because his side conceded more goals than any other team in the top 10 of the Premier League.

His budget will have been boosted after securing lucrative Champions League football for next term.

During the final-day clash with Wolves, which Chelsea had to win to finish in the top four, Lampard made the bold call to drop his £71.6m keeper.

Willy Caballero was called into the starting XI – just as he was for a period midway through the season when Arrizabalaga’s form dipped.

Lampard sent another statement by sticking with 38-year-old Caballero for the FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal on Saturday.

The Chelsea boss explained that he always planned to play his cup keeper at Wembley.

“To be honest that was my plan anyway was for him to play the FA Cup throughout pretty much,” Lampard told BT Sport when explaining his team selection.

“And he plays, he got a clean sheet last week and we rely on him and we trust in him.”

However, the Athletic claims Lampard was instead sending a strong message to Abramovich that there are other areas of the squad that need investment.

Lampard has previously warned that he is not afraid of replacing Arrizabalaga as his No 1.

“The idea that we haven’t kept enough clean sheets is definitely not just a reflection of our goalkeeper,” said Lampard.

“That’s something that we have to work on as a team, look at how we train, maybe how we recruit generally going forward.

“But I don’t want to pinpoint it on Kepa today.

“The squad is really strong as we are and I want it to stay that way for one more week domestically and then going to Bayern Munich. Looking forward to next season will happen after that.”

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