‘Managing his workload is important’: Chelsea boss Frank Lampard happy to manage Thiago Silva’s training schedule to ensure the Brazilian can continue to plug the club’s leaky defence
- Thiago Silva has made a big impact since arriving at Chelsea during the summer
- The 36-year-old has helped Frank Lampard’s side notch four clean sheets
- Given his age though Lampard said he will have to ‘manage his work-load’
Silva and fellow summer recruit Edouard Mendy – who faces his former club Rennes in the Champions League tonight – have had an resounding impact on Lampard’s team in recent weeks.
At 36, Silva’s arrival on a free transfer from Paris Saint-Germain raised a few eyebrows, but the cultured centre-half looks to be one of the signings of the season.
Thiago Silva has been important in helping Chelsea keep four successive clean sheets
At the age of 36 though, Frank Lampard knows he will have to manage Silva’s work-load
The defender has played a key role in the Blues notching four successive clean sheets to ease long-standing criticisms over Chelsea’s rearguard.
However, given his age it remains to be seen how regularly Silva can feature for the Blues this season – but Lampard is ready to wrap his South American star in cotton wool to ensure he can continue to lead Chelsea’s defence resurgence.
The Chelsea boss said: ‘Managing his work load is very important. You try to have standards and levels that you train at, every day we gauge fitness levels for the players and we try and balance it out to make sure that every player is at an optimum level as much as we can, every player is different and has different levels.
‘Around the general rule of how we train, whether I talk with the sports science team and if they give me some clues or what they see. Some of it is in my eye or with my staff and a lot of it comes from my relationship with the players and from speaking with them.
‘In particular, when you have an experienced player, a great professional like Thiago is, that honest conversation is very easy and if it means managing and training and game time like it did last week with the game in Russia (against Krasnodor) then I’ll be very honest and up front with him and tell him what I think.
‘You’re right, I did feel it at the back end of my career, I remember how I had to change my training with tweaks so I’ll be very open with Thiago.’
Likewise, Mendy emergence as Chelsea’s undisputed first-choice keeper has also been a major factor in recent weeks.
Lampard will hope that Silva can keep Rennes out in the Champions League on Wednesday
The 28-year-old has conceded just once – in an EFL Cup tie against Tottenham – in his six games for Chelsea.
And Lampard added: ‘He has shown the qualities that we were looking for, has brought confidence to those around him and should take credit alongside others.
‘He is very low maintenance, he works hard wants to work more and is eager to engage with his team-mates and myself.
‘A smile on his face and he is playing well. It’s a real positive when you have a player who comes in and hits the ground running but also in the dressing room.’