This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
Chelsea, as one of the Premier League’s biggest clubs, have a host of players who have been called up to represent their respective countries during the international break. Frank Lampard will be hoping that he does not have any fresh injury issues to contend when they return in a couple of weeks.
The latter has since pulled out of the squad due to injury, but the other two inclusions, for France and England respectively, are cause for debate.
Kante, for example, has not made an appearance since he hurt his hamstring whilst warming up for Les Bleus’ game against Iceland. Lampard, at the time, was critical of the way he was treated by Didier Deschamps, who kept him on the bench for his team’s next Euro 2020 qualifier against Turkey.
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Lampard already has a difficult job on his hands putting a competitive squad given the club’s two-window transfer ban, and these international choices do not make his task any easier.
Why have both Deschamps and Southgate felt the need to call the players up to their squads when there is a danger of them being unavailable for longer periods in the future? Kante is one of the best midfielders in the world, but the 2018 World Cup winners are blessed with talent.
Surely there is someone else who could fill in for him in fixtures against Moldova and Albania?
For England, Jack Grealish was recently nominated for the Premier League Player of the Month for October and is fully fit. Could he not replace Mount? And whatever happened to Dele Alli?
It must leave Lampard so frustrated when the well-being of his players appears to be flagrantly disregarded.
Now, he can only hope they return in good health, leaving him with the most players possible to choose from as the season progresses.