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Thomas Partey delivers Man Utd verdict as Arsenal ace reveals how Gunners can beat rivals

Arsenal new boy Thomas Partey has given his thoughts on Manchester United ahead of the crunch Premier League clash between the two sides on Sunday. Partey, who joined from Atletico Madrid on deadline day, was an unused substitute in the 3-0 win over Dundalk in the Europa League and is expected to start against United.

The 27-year-old is looking forward to the chance to go up against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side and has backed the Gunners to come away with all three points.

Speaking to Arsenal’s official website, Partey said: “Manchester United are a great team with great players and important players.

“If we do our work well, if we go in and fight for points, if we put a lot of pressure on them, we’ll be able to win.”

Partey also reflected on his first Premier League start against Leicester City last weekend, which the Gunner lost 1-0 thanks to a goal from Jamie Vardy.

JUST IN: Mikel Arteta warned Man Utd result could lead to surprise decision

“I could not believe it [when I found out I was starting],” he added.

“I was a bit nervous but I always get these nerves when I play most of my game, so I was like, ‘OK, let me keep it cool and I’ll be fine’. 

“Then when we started the game I thought we had control of the ball and so many chances, and we were unlucky.

“It’s part of football and we have to keep working, we have to keep working hard because we have a great team of great players. 

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“I think we’re going to be successful. I think I’m in the team that I’m looking forward to playing for. 

“They have everything, a good manager, good players, the right mentality and the way they play is very good. It’s the best place for me.”

Manager Mikel Arteta has also been previewing the clash with United and the Spaniard has been reflecting on the great rivalry between Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger.

“I think it’s one of the best rivalries in the Premier League,” he said.

“The history of this clash is huge. I remember times between Arsène and Sir Alex, and the confrontations between players. 

“They were fighting for the league and it was always really, really tight. It was probably the biggest clash in the Premier League and I’m excited to go to Old Trafford.

“I want to believe we’re getting closer to getting the win there. For sure our mindset is going to be to go there and win the game.

“That’s the approach that we’re going to have and the gameplay we’re going to put in place to go there on Sunday.”

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Nobby Stiles: Tributes paid to ‘one of the greatest-ever Mancunians’ after 1966 World Cup winner’s death


Tributes have been paid from the world of football and beyond to Nobby Stiles, the 1966 World Cup winner who has died after a long illness.

Stiles, who had prostate cancer and dementia in his later years, is the seventh member of the England side that started the Wembley final to pass away after captain Bobby Moore, Alan Ball, Ray Wilson, Gordon Banks, Martin Peters and Jack Charlton.

“Saddened to hear that Nobby Stiles has passed away,” Gary Lineker tweeted. “Another of our 1966 World Cup winning heroes leaves us. He had a heart that was even bigger than the gap in his teeth. RIP Nobby.”

Sir Geoff Hurst, whose hat-trick helped England to victory over West Germany in the final, paid his own tribute to Stiles.

“Hugely sad to hear Nobby has passed away,” he wrote on Twitter. “We were playing together way back for the U17s, U23s, and of course, for England, in fact, it was my first cap when Nobby scored, I think he was wearing No. 9! Great character, and the heart and soul of the team, he will be sorely missed.”

two Stiles played most of his career for his boyhood club Manchester United, where he won league titles and the 1968 European Cup, and he later returned to coach youngsters coming through the ranks like Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville.

United said: “We are extremely saddened to learn of the passing of Nobby Stiles MBE. An integral part of our first-ever European Cup-winning side, Nobby was a titan of the club’s history, cherished for his heart and personality on and off the pitch. He will be sorely missed by us all.”

The former defender Danny Higginbotham was one of those who came through United’s youth setup. “Such sad news to hear that Nobby Stiles has passed away,” he tweeted. “I know he was ill for a while but doesn’t take away the shock. He was my coach as a kid @ManUtd and what an unbelievably humble human being. A massive influence on myself as a youngster. Thoughts and love with his family.”

The mayor Manchester, Andy Burnham, said of Stiles, who was made an MBE in 2000: “Quite simply one of the greatest-ever Mancunians.” 

England’s most capped player, the former goalkeeper Peter Shilton, sad Stiles was “a great person who I admired very much”.

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Manchester United transfer news LIVE: Hakan Calhanoglu, Jadon Sancho and latest updates

1966 World Cup winner Nobby Stiles dies

The latest breaking news, comment and features from The Independent.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer addresses Dayot Upamecano to Manchester United speculation

Upamecano linked with Old Trafford during summer transfer window

FRED FINALLY LIVING UP TO PRICE TAG

Eyebrows were raised when Manchester United signed Brazilian Fred for £52 million back in 2018 and a string of average performances after joining from Shakhtar Donetsk seemed to prove the doubters right.

However under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Fred is having something of a resurgence. He was an integral part of United’s wins ove PSG and RB Leipzig and quietly goes about his job in the middle of the pitch.

Fred has produced a run of more consistent displays in recent weeks to suggest he could become integral to Solskjaer’s future plans. Indeed the manager was full of praise for the 27-year-old saying: 

“He’s got incredible attributes and we are seeing the better side of Fred, definitely. “We’ve waited for it, but I think he played a fantastic season last season and he did what we wanted of him.

“He’s a humble boy, he works really hard and, as he said after the Leipzig game, he missed a couple of passes but that’s in his genes as well, to always look to improve and look at his own performance.

“He’s high energy, he’s a little small but his point of gravity, his balance is fantastic, he’s so sharp to get to balls, wins the ball and he can also play a good pass, so we’re delighted with his development.”

KOULIBALY HAPPY AT NAPOLI

Kalidou Koulibaly is a name that always comes up concerning centre-back transfers and he has been linked with Man Utd, Man City and Liverpool in recent times.

City’s interest cooled after the signed Ruben Dias but United are still being linked with the 29-year-old.

However, the Napoli defender opened up about his future telling Sky Sports: 

“I love Naples and Naples loves me, that’s the most important thing.

“I always make myself available game after game, I still have three years of contract, I’m calm, the teams are looking for me but I’m still here.

“I play at my level and I help this team and these people because I want to give something back to them then we’ll see what happens.”

UNITED VS ARSENAL HAS NO EDGE

Former Arsenal player Nigel Winterburn says that a fixture between Arsenal and Manchester United no longer has a edge to it because of how the game has changed.

He points to the less physical nature of the current game as a reason for the fixture losing it’s sense of drama. He told FreeSuperTips: 

“Manchester United and Arsenal has lost its cutting edge as the game is not as physical as it once was, and both teams are no longer feared in the Premier League like they were when I was playing.

“When I was coming through, Manchester United were the team that everyone in the Premier League was desperate to beat. At Arsenal, you always felt that if you beat Manchester United in the league, then you would finish ahead of them and have a great chance of winning the title. Those games you had added intensity because of the history and incidents that would happen that made those games so special, and as a player you wanted to be a part of those games.

“They are still two huge clubs, but they’re not teams that are fighting for the title and have both fell down the pecking order when it comes to signing the best players. Arsenal were always going head-to-head with Manchester United for league titles, and that is where the intensity stemmed from and where they have both fell off in recent years, the game has lost its edge. It must be said that the rivalry is not what it was, but it is still a huge game which the players should be able to motivate themselves for.”

UNITED BOUNCE BACK FROM SPURS DEFEAT

Manchester United have turned around their form with three wins and a draw since being humiliated at home by Tottenham when they lost 6-1.

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer explains how the club responded to the worst defeat in their history: 

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reveals how Manchester United responded to ‘brutal’ Tottenham defeat

Solskjaer pleased with how United have turned form around

COULD MILAN MAKE DALOT MOVE PERMANENT?

Despite not playing a minute of Serie A football yet this term Diogo Dalot is already impressing at the San Siro.

His Man of the Match performance on Thursday night hints at a bright future for the 21-year-old at the Italian club who may be thinking of signing the loanee permanently. 

Dalot arrived at the club with no buying option for the Rossoneri in the loan deal but Manchester United instead agreed they could negotiate a potential transfer in the future, should all parties be willing. 

However, the better Dalot performs, the more Milan will want to keep him and the more his parent club will value him.

SOLSKJAER TONS UP

This weekend’s match against Arsenal will be Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s 100th game in charge of Manchester United.

The Red Devils have been in good touch since losing 6-1 at home to Tottenham with wins over PSG and RB Leipzig in the Champions League and a draw against Chelsea in the Premier League.

Solskjaer is hoping to celebrate with a win against their North London opponents. 

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Scott Parker insists Fulham are ‘moving in the right direction’ despite poor start


Fulham manager Scott Parker admits he is “bitterly disappointed” with his club’s current position but insists the side is improving.

The Cottagers suffered their fifth defeat from their opening six Premier League games at home to Crystal Palace last weekend, despite recording the majority of the possession.

Parker is aware his side need to make changes, but insists Fulham are moving in the right direction ahead of Monday’s crucial game against West Brom.

“I constantly see improvements. There were a lot of good things against Crystal Palace that I see and that I have seen in games, some real positives,” the 40-year-old said.

“But there has been 10, 11 new players that have come into the building and a lot of young players.

“I think we’ve brought players here that have massive potential but, in saying that, don’t have a lot of Premier League experience. This is constant improving, constant chipping away trying to improve, trying to get better as individuals and as a team.

“We are disappointed that we’ve only got one point on the board, bitterly disappointed, none of us are happy about that. There’s also elements that I am happy with and I feel like we’re moving in the right direction really.”

Despite being rooted to the foot of the Premier League table, Fulham could move clear of the relegation zone if results go their way and they beat 17th-placed West Brom when the sides meet at Craven Cottage.

When asked about the game, Parker said: “Big game, of course. Every game for us is a big game.

“The competition of where we both are in the league and I think Slaven (West Brom manager Slaven Bilic) will be the same in terms of where he sees his team this year, and where he’s going to be in and about is probably where we are.

“This is a real big game for both of us because you want to try and take points off each other really, so of course.

“Every game is massive and it’s going to be massive for us this year, but I think this game has a little bit extra.”

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Solskjaer has three key Man Utd decisions to make before Arsenal clash

Manchester United go up against Arsenal in a crunch Premier League clash at Old Trafford and manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has three important decisions to make when it comes to his team selection.

United go into the game off the back of an excellent 5-0 win over Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig in the Champions League and, after Solskjaer made a number of changes for that game, he has some tough decisions to make.

In midfield, Solskjaer has preferred a pairing of Scott McTominay and Fred in recent weeks, with Bruno Fernandes in a more advanced role.

Record signing Paul Pogba, £40m new boy Donny van de Beek and the experienced Nemanja Matic have had to settle for a spot on the bench but all three started against Leipzig.

Pogba and Van de Beek in particular impressed and Solskjaer will have to decide whether either player has done enough to warrant a start against Arsenal.

Fred could be in line for a rest after playing the full 90 minutes in United's last three games over the space of just eight days, leaving room for either Pogba or Van de Beek to start.

  • Man Utd finally feeling vindication for Fred deal – two years after splashing out £52m

Another player who impressed against Leipzig was teenage forward Mason Greenwood, who netted United's opener with an excellent first time finish.

With Anthony Martial serving the final game of a three-match suspension after his red card against Tottenham Hotspur and Edinson Cavani still working his way to full fitness, having not started a competitive game since March, Greenwood is likely to be given the nod in attack.

However, what position he is deployed in remains to be seen, with Solskjaer utilising three different formations in United's last three games.

Against Paris Saint-Germain, he deployed a back three before reverting to his favoured 4-2-3-1 in the 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

He changed it again for the Leipzig clash, opting for a midfield diamond and it will be interesting to see how United line up against Arsenal.

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Arsenal's 'top contract negotiator Huss Fahny AXED'

Arsenal’s ‘top contract negotiator Huss Fahny AXED’ as north London side press on with ‘significant restructuring’ behind the scenes

  • Huss Fahmy, Arsenal’s contract negotiator, is set to leave the club next month
  • Arsenal have restructured behind the scenes and many staff have departed
  • Fahmy worked as the club’s head of football operations after joining in 2017

Arsenal’s top negotiator Huss Fahmy has reportedly become the latest high profile staff member to agree his exit from the club as they continue ‘significant restructuring’ behind the scenes.   

Fahmy has been working as the club’s head of football operations and part of his job role saw him assist with completing contracts and liaising with agents.

The Athletic report that Fahmy will leave at the end of next month after completing a handover as the club continue to overhaul their structure behind the scenes. 

Huss Fahny (right), Arsenal’s contract negotiator, is reportedly set to depart the club

Back in August, Sportsmail revealed that Arsenal’s famed global scout Francis Cagigao – the man who discovered Cesc Fabregas – was among the victims of the club’s redundancy cull.

Just days after their euphoric FA Cup victory over Chelsea, the Gunners confirmed the hugely disappointing news that 55 members of staff were to lose their jobs as part of a restructuring due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Cagigao’s departure was swiftly followed by head of football Raul Sanllehi with managing director Vinai Venkatesham replacing him in the role. 

Sanllehi joined the Premier League side in February 2018, having previously worked at Barcelona. 

Head of UK scouting Peter Clark along with scout Brian McDermott also departed over the summer, as did first-team rehabilitation co-ordinator Tim Parham. 

The restructuring behind the scenes means that boss Mikel Arteta is closely assisted by Venkatesham and technical director Edu.  

More to follow. 




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Manchester United and England legend Nobby Stiles dies aged 78

Nobby Stiles, part of the England team which won the World Cup in 1966, has died aged 78 after a long illness.

Stiles was also part of the Manchester United side which became the first English club to win the European Cup two years later, when they beat Benfica in the final at Wembley.

A statement issued by the Stiles family read: ‘The Stiles family are sad to announce that Nobby Stiles passed away peacefully today (30/10/2020) surrounded by his family after a long illness.

The family kindly ask for privacy at this sad time.’

Stiles was credited with playing a key role in neutralising the threat of Portuguese star Eusebio in the World Cup semi-final. In total he won 28 caps, the lowest number of any of the World Cup-winning side.

Stiles was born in Collyhurst, Manchester, in May 1942, during an air raid. He agreed apprentice terms with United in 1959, at a time when the club was still recovering from the Munich air disaster a year earlier in which eight players were killed.

He won league titles with the Red Devils in 1965 and 1967, before the continental success the following year. Stiles left United in 1971, going on to play for Middlesbrough and Preston. He later managed the Lilywhites between 1977 and 1981, before coaching Canadian side Vancouver Whitecaps and then West Brom between 1985 and 1986.

He returned to United as a youth team coach under Sir Alex Ferguson in 1989 for a four-year stint. Stiles suffered a series of health issues in later life, including a dementia diagnosis.

In 2010, after a mini-stroke, he decided to sell his medals in order to leave something to his family. United bought them for £200,000 and the medals are now housed in the club’s museum

More to follow…

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Guardiola urges Premier League to reconsider decision over five subs

‘There are statistics… 47 per cent more muscular injuries than the previous season’: Pep Guardiola joins growing calls for the Premier League to reconsider the decision not to allow teams to make five subs in games

  • Pep Guardiola says Premier League teams should be allowed to make five subs 
  • Teams outside the top six voted against keeping five substitutions per game 
  • Guardiola is concerned about the increased amount of muscular injuries 

Pep Guardiola led the calls for the Premier League to change the rules on a number of substitutions allowed in fixtures this season.

The Manchester City manager was vocal with his displeasure when the league reverted from five changes, implemented during Project Restart, back to three.

Guardiola, whose side have suffered a number of muscle injuries over the last month, reaffirmed that message on Friday as talk swirls of a possible alteration to the rules.

Pep Guardiola has urged the Premier League to let teams make five substitutions per game

Teams outside of the top six voted against keeping five substitutions for fear of offering an advantage to the bigger clubs with larger squads.

‘Definitely they should (change). They should, 100 per cent,’ the City manager said. ‘It’s not about one cub. There are statistics that they don’t deny, 47 per cent more muscular injuries than the previous season.

‘All the leagues, Spain and Germany, is five substitutes to protect the players – not one team. Hopefully they will reconsider.’

Guardiola is definitely without Sergio Aguero and Benjamin Mendy for Saturday’s trip to Sheffield United, while Gabriel Jesus and Nathan Ake have returned to training.

Premier League teams outside of the top six voted against keeping five substitutions

Manchester City boss Guardiola is concerned about the increased amount of muscular injuries

City are five points shy of leaders Liverpool and Everton with a game in hand following last week’s draw against West Ham. Guardiola believes they would have started the campaign firing on all cylinders without a raft of fitness issues.

‘Hopefully they will do what the rest of the world does,’ he added. ‘Intelligent people adjust for the benefit of football.

‘The top players are the ones who can play three times a week without getting injured. You have to look at the regeneration, how they can play and play.

‘With this amount of games, if the manager has to motivate the players then it is over. I can’t make a speech every day, I’m not here to motivate them.’




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'Project Big Picture is NOT dead,' EFL chairman Rick Parry says

‘Project Big Picture is NOT dead,’ EFL chairman Rick Parry says, as he calls on Premier League clubs ‘to recognise there needs to be change’ after they rejected Liverpool and Manchester United’s revamp plan

  • Rick Parry is adamant big clubs care about long-term future of English game 
  • EFL chairman insists that Project Big Picture is not dead and can be revived 
  • It was roundly rejected by other Premier League clubs at crunch meeting  
  • The plans would have seen more funding for EFL clubs and competitions axed 
  • But the clamour for the ‘Big Six’ to have more power angered top-flight clubs 

EFL chairman Rick Parry insists Project Big Picture is not dead in the water and could yet be revived. 

The controversial proposals put forward predominantly by Liverpool and Manchester United, endorsed by Parry, were shot down in a meeting with all the Premier League clubs. 

‘No no. Absolutely not. I do not believe it is’, Parry told Jamie Carragher for the Telegraph when asked if Project Big Picture was dead.   

Rick Parry, EFL chairman, has insisted that Project Big Picture is not dead in the water 

Project Big Picture was to offer more funding for the EFL but big clubs wanted special rights

He insisted: ‘There is too much good in it. The debate has to be kept alive. The EFL will not lie down and shut up. 

‘The Premier League has promised a strategic review. They recognise there needs to be change. I hope it happens speedily.

‘It is not complicated. It could be done really quickly. We have EFL clubs finding it challenging to pay wages in November. Others will be struggling around Christmas. Without supporters, by February and March there will be more in that situation.’   

Liverpool owner John W Henry and United executive vice chairman Ed Woodward were two of the main advocates of the plans but Project Big Picture was seen by many as a power grab from the ‘Big Six’ in English football despite the pledge for increased funding for the EFL and scrapping of the Carabao Cup.  

It proposed that the Premier League would be cut from 20 to 18 teams with ‘nine long term shareholders given special power and voting rights. 

Parry denies that those pushing the big picture agenda are not doing so covertly in an underhand manner. 

He also expressed his disappointment that the FA did not endorse aspects of the proposals that they liked. Greg Clarke, FA chairman, distanced himself from the talks having initially been involved. 

Parry thinks there is enough good in the proposals for them to be tweaked and approved

Parry lamented the fact that the radical proposals were ‘leaked to kill’ Project Big Picture in his opinion but he is optimistic and believes it ‘is too good to die’.  

The EFL chairman thinks the fact that Championship clubs back a reduced Premier League for a more sustainable funding model indicates the will to make some of the serious changes he advocates. 

He noted the widespread support from EFL clubs for the proposals and remains optimistic that a consensus can be reached despite vehement opposition wanting to keep additional powers out of reach for the Big Six  

PROJECT BIG PICTURE PROPOSALS

  • The Premier League will be cut from 20 to 18 teams, with the Championship, League One and League Two all keeping their usual 24 clubs.
  • Nine ‘long term shareholders’ will be given the power and have special voting rights on all sorts of issues in the Premier League, including rule changes, who becomes chief executive, and even if a new owner can take over at another club.
  • A £350million rescue fund will be made immediately available to the EFL and Football Association for lost revenues for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.
  • The League Cup and the Community Shield will be completely abolished.
  • Parachute payments will be scrapped and instead, 25 per cent of Premier League revenue will be distributed to the EFL.
  • Promotion play-offs brought in, involving 16th-placed team in the Premier League, and 3rd, 4th and 5th in the Championship.
  • Funding will be provided to set up a new and independent women’s league.
  • Season to start later and pre-season friendlies extended.




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Kai Havertz contender to replace Jorginho as Chelsea's penalty taker

Kai Havertz is the obvious contender to replace Jorginho as Chelsea’s penalty taker with a 100 per cent record while Timo Werner is also an option… but Hakim Ziyech won’t be near spot-kicks anytime soon

  • Frank Lampard could make Timo Werner his penalty taker after Jorginho missed 
  • Chelsea midfielder Jorginho has missed two spot-kicks out of last four he’s taken
  • Sportsmail assesses the contenders who could be given penalty kick duties

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard revealed he will talk to his players before deciding who will be the man with the responsibility to take penalties. 

The Blues boss could make Timo Werner his new spot-kick taker after the £53million summer signing rifled in his effort from 12 yards in their 4-0 win against Krasnodar in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

Werner stepped up in the absence of regular penalty taker Jorginho, who had been substituted, although the midfielder had also missed from the spot with the game goalless.

Jorginho, who deploys a hop-skip technique when standing over the ball, has now missed two penalties in his last four attempts.

Here, Sportsmail looks at the other contenders who could step up for Chelsea and whether it is time for one of them to take penalty duties off Jorginho. 

Will Frank Lampard choose Timo Werner (R) to replace Jorginho as Chelsea’s penalty taker?

The Italy international has been trusted with the responsibility of being Chelsea’s go-to guy when it comes to penalties since Eden Hazard’s departure to Real Madrid.

And he has largely been successful at Stamford Bridge, with just two misses in games coming in recent weeks. Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson saved his effort in the Blues’ 2-0 defeat while Jorginho found the woodwork this week.

The midfielder has a conversion rate of 81 per cent after scoring 22 penalties out of 27 and has provided a cool head in a pressure situation. His other miss for Chelsea came in the League Cup final shootout defeat by Manchester City in 2018-19.

Chelsea midfielder Jorginho missed his second spot-kick in four attempts on Wednesday night

His unusual tactic sometimes relies on goalkeepers making the first move and Jorginho scored two from the spot in their 4-0 win over Crystal Palace at the start of the month, outwitting Vicente Guaita on both occasions.  

Striker Tammy Abraham wanted to take the second penalty but captain Cesar Azpilicueta showed faith in the club’s penalty taker and gave the ball to Jorginho.

After two misses in his last four attempts, Jorginho may be lacking in confidence from the spot so it could be the ideal time for Lampard to take him out of the spotlight. 

But the Chelsea boss defended the midfielder, saying: ‘If you take penalties as regularly as he does, and I did, you are going to miss some.’

Timo Werner 

Former RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner appears to be the most suitable candidate to step up to the responsibility due to his devastating clinical touch in front of goal. But do the stats back that up?

After scoring from 12 yards on Wednesday Werner has scored 11 penalties out of a possible 14, giving him a conversion rate just less than Jorginho’s at 79 per cent. 

The Germany international was RB Leipzig’s trusted spot-kick taker and he scored an important penalty against Tottenham en route to the Champions League semi-finals.

Werner is therefore used to the intense situation of taking a penalty and his prolific form in recent seasons shows he knows how to finish.

The 24-year-old could shoulder the responsibility and become Chelsea’s long-term man from the spot.

Chelsea striker Timo Werner scored from the penalty spot later in the match against Krasnodar

Tammy Abraham

The English striker has had to be patient this season following several attacking summer recruits, playing just two full 90 minutes.

Abraham flourished under Lampard last season as the manager opted for youth and the 23-year-old has been keen to prove his worth this season when he’s been given the chance.

He has fallen behind Werner in the pecking order but scored on his first Premier League start this campaign at West Brom.

Tammy Abraham has a 75 per cent conversion rate from the penalty spot, scoring nine from 12

Abraham showed that he does not shy away from responsibility by wanting to take the second penalty against Palace. He has a 75 per cent conversion rate from the spot, scoring nine from 12.

He missed the crucial spot-kick in Chelsea’s shootout defeat by Liverpool in the UEFA Super Cup in August last year but he scored the winning penalty in the Championship play-off semi finals for Aston Villa the season before.

Backing your own ability is an important trait but he is very unlikely to be the permanent penalty taker in west London.

Hakim Ziyech

The £37m new arrival from Ajax netted his first goal for Chelsea against Krasnodar after being sidelined through injury.

However out of the possible options available to Lampard he has the worse conversion rate – 67 per cent – from the penalty spot.

He has scored six from nine but was not a regular penalty taker in four seasons at Ajax.

The 27-year-old is a tricky and pacy winger but he won’t be near the penalty spot anytime soon. 

Lampard has better options to choose from when it comes to selecting a penalty specialist. 

Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech was not a regular penalty taker for his previous club Ajax

Kai Havertz

The Chelsea playmaker, who joined for a whopping £89m from Bayer Leverkusen this summer, is still settling in at Stamford Bridge but has shown glimpses of why big money was spent.

The 21-year-old has a 100 per cent record from the spot and so is very much a strong contender to be handed the responsibility by Lampard.

Havertz was trusted with penalty duties at the Bundesliga outfit and scored all seven he was required to take between 2018 and this year.  

Chelsea’s £89million playmaker Kai Havertz has a 100 per cent record from the spot

He is a skilful, classy and composed player on the ball and is calmness personified when standing over a dead ball 12 yards from goal.

Havertz is an obvious contender to take over the reins from Jorginho and giving him the responsibility could propel his Chelsea career in an instant.

Mason Mount

Lampard has plenty of faith in the young English midfielder but Mount has only taken penalties in a shootout in the past.

Nevertheless, he still has a solid record scoring three from the four spot-kicks he has taken, a conversion rate of 75 per cent.

He was successful during his loan spell at Derby in a shootout victory over Southampton in the FA Cup and also scored the first penalty in the club’s momentous night at Old Trafford in the Carabao Cup in the 2018-19 campaign.

The 21-year-old scored in the shootout against Liverpool in the Super Cup but he missed with his most recent opportunity. 

Mount’s effort in the Carabao Cup fourth-round defeat by Spurs last month clipped the outside of the post and that proved to be the decider.

Mount is unlikely to be given the sole responsibility for penalties in games but he can be relied upon if needed, which is good news for Chelsea… and England.

Mason Mount has scored three out of four penalties in shootouts for Derby and Chelsea




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