Frank Lampard has urged Chelsea’s players to channel the spirit of their 2012 Champions League triumph as they prepare to face Real Madrid in the quarter-finals. In a meeting with the squad, the caretaker boss reminded them of the unlikely win over Bayern Munich under interim manager Roberto Di Matteo. Lampard, who captained the team in the final, had himself suffered a difficult season until Andre Villas-Boas was sacked as boss in March. Chelsea midfielder Enzo Fernandez said Lampard’s message was to “keep our heads straight” and that the 2012 victory was “a great example for us”.
Chelsea face a daunting task against holders Real Madrid, but Fernandez said the team was not afraid. “Of course there is respect because we know the quality Real have and the forwards they have,” he said. “But we will try to counteract them.” Lampard has a full squad to choose from and N’Golo Kante will return after being rested in Saturday’s 1-0 loss at Wolves.
Chelsea’s poor Premier League form means few give them a chance against Real Madrid. However, Lampard said: “The only thing the players can do is prove it on the pitch.” The first leg takes place on Wednesday.