Chelsea are desperately missing Eden Hazard and are struggling to unlock the opposition’s defence as a result of his absence, according to Pat Nevin.
The former Chelsea player was on The Football Show on Off The Ball and was commenting on his old club’s poor run of form.
The Blues are still in fourth place in the Premier League but have lost three of their last five league matches, including a 2-0 loss at home to Southampton.
While Nevin believes Frank Lampard is in no danger of losing the support of the fans he thinks the manager himself will be very unhappy with how things are going.
“I went to see Chelsea - Bournemouth last week and I sat in with the fans in the west stand. I was sat on the 18-yard line and started listening to what was going on. Number 1 - they don’t care if it’s mid-table.
“They really don’t. They’re fine. It’s all cool. It’s not like it was before. Frank [Lampard] has got time. You can park that. The club’s the same. Park that. It’s fine.
“Frank [Lampard] won’t feel that way. He’ll think, ‘I’m a winner. I want to win. I want to do the best I possibly can. Why is this not going right?’
“You can look at all the complicated things - he went for a 3-4-3 yesterday. At home against a team that sits deep - basically having three centre backs means you’ve got one less attacker,” Nevin said.
The former Scotland international feels that without Eden Hazard Chelsea are blunt in attack and need to find a new way to break teams down.
“Lots of teams have done this to Chelsea over the past five or six years. Lots of teams have packed their defence and Chelsea have found a way through. And Chelsea found the way through by a guy named Eden Hazard and he ain’t there.
“You watch it and if you sit there for 90 minutes every time and you’re playing against Southampton and you’re playing against Bournemouth and you’re playing against these teams.
“And you’re thinking, ‘There’s a lot of good players there. I’m passing the ball and I’m doing this and I’m putting good crosses in.’ But it’s not Eden Hazard,” Nevin said.
While there is no easy way of replacing a player with so much talent, Chelsea will need to improve their attacking play somehow if they wish to stay in the top four.