English Premiership

Lampard: 'We need to be absolutely ready'

Frank Lampard (Getty Images)
Frank Lampard (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has called on his players to be "absolutely ready" for their Super Cup clash with Liverpool on Wednesday, following a disappointing defeat to Manchester United.

Lampard was twice a losing finalist in the competition as a Blues player in 2012 and 2013 but now has the opportunity to get his hands on a first piece of silverware since becoming the club's head coach over the summer.

His reign got off to a frustrating start as they suffered a 4-0 defeat at Manchester United on the opening weekend of the Premier League season, but the former midfielder is hopeful of bouncing back in Istanbul on Wednesday.

"We need to be absolutely ready," Lampard told uefa.com. "It's a cup that the club desperately wants to win.

"I've never won it, a lot of players in there have never won it, so we have to give it everything."

Lampard was not too downbeat after the Old Trafford reverse because the scoreline flattered Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side given that Tammy Abraham was inches away from putting the Blues' ahead when he smashed the upright when the game was still 0-0.

Chelsea had other chances to get on the scoresheet, with Emerson cracking an angled strike off the crossbar in the second half as United took their opportunities at the opposite end.

Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford's second of the game in the space of two minutes midway through the second half were a killer blow before Daniel James' late deflected effort wrapped up the win for the hosts.

Lampard now wants his players to issue a rapid response, although he is again set to be without injured stars such as Willian, Antonio Rudiger, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

Nevertheless, the 41-year-old is backing his current crop of fit players to deliver and he has stressed the importance of the Super Cup to the club.

Lampard added: "It's going to be tough, but we cannot walk off the pitch and think, ‘Oh, we could've done that' or ‘We missed that opportunity' or ‘We weren't quite ready' or make any excuses for ourselves."

Liverpool travel to Turkey with their own injury problem to contend with as influential goalkeeper Alisson is facing several weeks on the sidelines because of a calf injury he suffered against Norwich City on Friday.

Former West Ham custodian Adrian is the man who will fill the void between the sticks against Chelsea.

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