LONDON (AFP) – Tammy Abraham’s promising start to the season has gone a long way towards justifying the decision of Chelsea manager Frank Lampard to place his faith in the young striker.
The challenge now is for the 21-year-old to demonstrate he can maintain that form and show he can provide the attacking focal point.
After a stuttering start in the opening two games of the Premier League season, Abraham has quickly found his feet, scoring twice against Norwich City and Sheffield United.
“Today when you talk about character and enthusiasm to play for this club, Tammy’s right up there,” Lampard said after Abraham’s brace against Norwich.
“He shows it every day. He can get better and better.”
More important, from Lampard’s point of view, is that the forward maintains his progress in the top-flight after showcasing his potential in the Championship while on loan at Bristol City, Swansea and Aston Villa.
Bigger name strikers have failed to make the grade at Stamford Bridge in recent years with Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain proving incapable of coming anywhere close to filling the gap left by Diego Costa.
The two window transfer ban, however, meant they could not be replaced, leaving Abraham and Olivier Giroud to contest the main striker spot with Belgian international Michy Batshuayi apparently a distant third in the pecking order.
The opening weeks of the campaign have confirmed that in Lampard’s eyes, the position is Abraham’s to lose.
Lampard has made no secret of his intention to develop a pathway from the youth set up into the first team.
He has responded impressively, offering pace and a physical presence up front while his 25 goals in 37 league games with Villa have confirmed his qualities.