Frank Lampard admitted he will have some ‘difficult’ conversations coming up this season as he tries to deal with a bloated Chelsea squad.
The Blues made serious inroads in the transfer market, with seven new incomings, however it was more difficult to let players leave.
Antonio Rudiger, Fikayo Tomori, Marcos Alonso, Emerson Palmieri and Jorginho were all tipped to leave over the course of the season.
However, they did not move on and no first team players from last season were sold, with only Willian and Pedro leaving on free transfers with their contracts coming to an end, while three of the squad went out on loan.
Lampard now has five centre-backs in his squad, with three left-backs also fighting for just one spot, which will likely go to Ben Chilwell.
And Lampard admitted that some of the conversations ahead of him with players could be tough, but necessary.
“When you have a squad of 20-plus players, which is what you have to have, you have to fight as much as you can to do the job right,” Lampard said.
“When you are trying to select squads and teams as you go through the season, you are trying to do it honestly and you front it up with the players.
“Even though they can be some difficult conversations, I think they respect that, particularly modern players. In years gone by, managers may have dropped players out and told them to get on with it in that old-school kind of way but I try to be as open and as honest with as many players as I can be.
“It’s not always easy. I can’t speak to everybody every week but I don’t mind it and actually, when you have those conversations, it helps you build the relationship for good or for bad.
“If you are being honest and players don’t like it, I have to accept that to a point but next time you speak to them or they do come back in, then you have a little extra dimension to how you have spoken to them or they have fed back to you.
“I think it’s important you have that open dialogue. I try to have it as much as I can and that is part of the job.”