Belfast Telegraph

Lampard stands by decision to throw Tomori into the mix

Chelsea 2 Sheffield United 2

Frank Lampard
Frank Lampard

By Jonathan Veal

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says Fikayo Tomori was deserving of his first start for the club.

The 21-year-old was named in Lampard's team for the 2-2 draw against Sheffield United as he was preferred to Andreas Christensen to partner Kurt Zouma in the centre of defence.

Lampard is a huge admirer of the England Under-21 international, having had him on loan at Derby last season, and says his first Chelsea appearance for three years was on merit.

"I think Tomori played very well for me last year and is training at a very high level," Lampard said.

"There is competition at centre-back, he deserved to play and I thought he played well. It was just a choice."

The Blades looked dead and buried at half-time after trailing to Tammy Abraham's double but they mounted a recovery in the second half and earned a point thanks to Callum Robinson's strike and a Zouma own goal.

Left-back Enda Stevens said his side showed Chelsea too much respect in the first half and wants them to use the result to build belief.

"The finish was brilliant, it's what we need to do, but we need to start games like that," said Stevens.

"I know we are playing at Stamford Bridge and playing against great players but the occasion can't get the better of us."

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