Rio Ferdinand singled out four Chelsea players for praise during Saturday’s derby with Tottenham. Chelsea boss Frank Lampard rang the changes from the 2-0 loss at home to Manchester United on Monday. Striker Olivier Giroud was handed just his third Premier League start of the season.
Midfielders Ross Barkley and Mason Mount also came into the side, as well as wing-back Marcos Alonso.
The changes paid dividends early on, with Giroud firing home to put the hosts into the lead.
Alonso made it two with a fine strike just after half time to double the advantage.
Speaking at the break, Ferdinand highlighted the first-half performance of the recalled quartet and said they were key to Chelsea’s pressing style.
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“[Giroud’s] one of the top goalscorers in French football internationally,” Ferdinand said on BT Sport.
“And I think Frank’s changes today have been really at the forefront of the good things that they’ve done today. Mason Mount, Barkley, Alonso and also obviously Giroud with the goal.
“I think a big part of [the pressing] has been Mason Mount, he’s the trigger, he sets the tone, Barkley behind that as well.
“They’ve all been in tune together and you only get this, there’s an intent from the management definitely, but then from the training ground they all know their triggers.
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“It’s about timing and getting there at the right time. They’re not going in ones and with single people, they’re going as groups and they’re winning their individual but also their team battles.”
Ahead of the match, former Tottenham and Chelsea boss Glenn Hoddle admitted he has been surprised by Giroud’s lack of football this season.
And Hoddle was predicting a strong performance from the former Arsenal man.
“Well I am surprised that Giroud hasn’t played more football under Frank, I must say,” Hoddle said.
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“I think last year he did excellently. He’s a great sub as well, he hasn’t seemed to bring him on.
“He brought him on the other night against United, it was forced really, he didn’t have many options.
“But when he comes on I think he’s a threat, I really do.
“He’s now starting today, he’s not got an opportunity to say to the manager: ‘Hang on a minute, I’m better than you think, I am a World Cup winner by the way’.
“And I think he also knows possibly his future is not going to be here.
“Inside himself he’s going to be relaxed and you might see him actually play so relaxed, he’s not under pressure, and sometimes players play better when they’re like that.
“So I expect quite a good performance from Giroud today.”
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