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'I rely on Mason Mount a lot' - Frank Lampard backs Chelsea star to bounce back

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Frank Lampard admits that has relied on Mason Mount a lot during both his reigns at Derby County and Chelsea.

The 21-year-old has been a regular during is first season in the Blues’ first team, however was taken off at half-time in the FA Cup win over Leicester City on Sunday.

Mount has had a very impressive debut campaign with the Blues, having also been a star of Derby’s run to the Championship play-offs last season.

While Lampard knows that Mount would not have been happy about being taken off at half-time at the weekend, just like the head coach wouldn’t have been either.

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The Blues boss does not think that or his performance will impact him moving on for the rest of the campaign.

“The first two games of the restart, which Mason played 90 minutes of both - Aston Villa he was incredibly lively and gave them a lot of problems going forwards and was probably unlucky not to score or have an assist,” Lampard said.

“Then the work ethic and quality that he showed against City was also incredible. He had two big performances in a week and then in the Leicester game, Mason didn’t have a bad performance, it was just a performance in line with the team and my choices to change were more about the players I could bring into that performances as opposed to the ones I took off the pitch.

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“I rely on Mason a lot, I did at Derby, I do at Chelsea. He brings so much to the team in his work ethic and the way he can start the press in midfield, and his quality on the ball which is only going to get better and it’s already at a really high level.

“Mason wouldn’t have been happy coming off at half-time, I know that because he’s a bit like myself.

“If there is one comparison I could make, I know that when he’s not playing he’d not happy and when he comes off he won’t be happy, but it was certainly a moment that he should not be happy and then straight back to it afterwards because he knows how much I trust in him.

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“He works brilliantly every day, Billy [Gilmour] and Reece [James] too. There will be no problem with Mason. I had to make a decision and it doesn’t affect my thinking for West Ham or going forwards.”

Mount will go up against his best friend Declan Rice when the Blues take on the Hammers.

Rice came through the Chelsea academy before being released by the club, and is now one of David Moyes’s key men.

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The pair were reprimanded early in the COVID-19 pandemic after breaking lockdown regulations by meeting up and having a kickabout at a local football centre.

Lampard admitted that he had to have a word with his young star, and that he expects him to be at his best when he goes up against his friend.

“I had the shortest word possible because I saw Mason a couple of places get compared to players who went out and partied, stayed out all night and did different things,” Lampard added.

Mason Mount and Frank Lampard after Chelsea's win over Liverpool (Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images)

“I’m not wanting to angle on that one but what I wanted to say on Mason was very innocently and naively, and wrong at the time and he very much quickly held his hands up to that.

“But he was kicking a ball about and that’s so typical of Mason and how he lives his life. So I had the shortest ever conversation with Mason.

“To say he was pretty apologetic and said he got it wrong straight away and we moved on. No problem at all.

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“There is only one thing I will ask of Mason – and from my point of view that is obviously all I care about going into this one.

“He texts him tonight, he smiles at him in the tunnel or whatever it is, but if and when they go up against each other he has try to beat him in every individual battle that he possibly can.

“And sensing Declan Rice's character, I am sensing they will both be like-minded on that one. We will see.”

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