LONDON (AFP) – Chelsea manager Frank Lampard wants his young side to be more ruthless after a 2-1 win over a much-changed Lille at Stamford Bridge secured their place in the last 16 of the Champions League.
Progress to the knockout stages at the expense of last season’s semi-finalists Ajax is an impressive achievement for the Blues boss after a summer in which the club lost Eden Hazard to Real Madrid and were unable to add to their squad due to a transfer ban.
First half goals from Tammy Abraham and Cesar Azpilicueta seemed to have Chelsea cruising into the knockout stages.
However, Lampard was left frustrated at having to endure a nervy final 12 minutes when Loic Remy pulled a goal back against his old club.
“It’s going to be a work in progress. With the young players we have in this side there will be bumps in the road,” said Lampard.
“I push them and can be quite hard on them, setting the high standards I want to see them reach, but at the same time I have to be patient.
“Today was a sign of how much work we still have got to do. It should have been a calmer finish to the game and that is the biggest thing that we need to improve.”
Chelsea progress in second place in Group H behind Valencia, who beat Ajax 1-0 in Amsterdam, meaning they face the daunting prospect of a last 16 tie against Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus or Leipzig.
“It’s a really good achievement for the group, but in the next stage and how cut throat it will be, we can’t afford to miss chances or give chances away like we have,” added Lampard.
“It’s a very tough draw no matter who it is because we came second in our group.”