LONDON: Chelsea will make a late call on midfielder Mason Mount’s participation in Sunday’s Premier League clash against leaders Liverpool as he continues to recover from an ankle injury, manager Frank Lampard said on Friday.
Having scored three league goals this season, Mount’s Champions League debut on Tuesday lasted nine minutes as a horror tackle by Valencia’s Francis Coquelin in Chelsea’s 1-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge forced Lampard to make an early substitution.
“He has got a chance,” Lampard told a news conference. “We saw the image of the tackle and it made it look really bad. We are trying to get him moving today, I will have to make the call before the game.
“His attitude is good so he will give everything to play. There was a lot of swelling, it didn’t look the best. If there is proper damage you can’t do much. We won’t take any risks, there is a bigger picture, we will do our best.”
Influential central midfielder N’Golo Kante has returned to training after recovering from an ankle injury but Lampard said they would be cautious about his return after rushing him back into the team last month.
Kante played 120 minutes in the Super Cup last month, where Chelsea lost to Liverpool on penalties, and 90 minutes again four days later in a 1-1 draw against Leicester City and the France international has not featured for the London side since.
“It is a boost, we know the importance of him. The question is how fit he is,” Lampard added. “He has played a couple of games, but he missed pre-season. Istanbul was miraculous. Now we have to manage him.
“I am delighted to work with him and if he can bring a positive for us then I will take it into consideration.”
Chelsea’s Callum Hudson-Odoi extended his contract until 2024 and Lampard said he urged the club to retain the winger, who was courted by Bayern Munich earlier this year, as he was central to his plans this season.
“I spoke to Callum in pre-season, I made him aware I want him to be part of the plans,” Lampard said. “The club have worked hard, so has he.
“It’s what everyone wanted. It was away from me slightly but I made it clear I wanted him at the club.”