Frank Lampard spoke to the media today, in what was an unfamiliar and unusual experience for the Chelsea manager.
The interview was conducted via a "Zoom call." It's a must that all managers do their media duties via an online call since the Covid-19 outbreak.
Speaking ahead of the Chelsea's Sunday match with Dean Smith's Aston Villa, Lampard talked about the selection issue.
Chelsea and the injury issue:
Throughout the season, Chelsea have been hit with several injuries. The likes of N'Golo Kante, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Callum Hudson-Odoi and various other players have been forced to miss parts of the 2019/2020 campaign.
However, after a 14-week hiatus, the Premier League is back. These few months have allowed Lampard's men to keep fit and train hard and the Blues manager welcomes back a few players for Sunday's game.
Lampard on the selection issue:
"I think it's a nice problem, we have missed big players this season in big parts. Ruben hasn't played for us, Kante played about 50 per cent of games - we could go through them and we've missed them so I enjoy the problem.
"The message to the players is whether you start on Sunday or not, we are going to need pretty much everyone in the squad. There has to be a togetherness. The games are going to look slightly different.
"Subs are going to be absolutely crucial, so the problem I have going is in a nice one and the players have to perform when asked to, and they look ready to."
Lampard discussed which players will be absent from Sunday's game: "Fikayo Tomori has a muscle injury, probably from the stresses of trying to get fit quickly. He has an injury that will probably keep him out for 10 days or so.
"Hudson-Odoi had a small injury earlier in the training process, and he’s not match fit, albeit he’s physically fit now."
The five subs rule:
The idea of being able to make five substitutions in a game is welcomed by Lampard: "I think it's a very good thing considering the circumstances the five subs, and a bigger bench. I think that should be something that stays the course because you work with players all through the week, the squad, you want to try to get young players on the bench.
"In the Premier League everyone has academies and big squads, so to be able to try to get younger players long-term, I think that would be a great thing. But in the short-term I think the five subs when we saw the energy levels and couple injuries in the first game, it shows you how crucial it is for player care and keeping our players fit."
This, therefore, gives the Chelsea manager a chance to rotate throughout the game. No one is going to be 100% match fit yet and the use of five subs should be looked upon in high regards by managers across the country.
Chelsea and Frank Lampard will be heading to Villa Park with essentially a fully fit squad and will be looking to kick things off with a big win.