Frank Lampard questions Chelsea’s ‘strange’ decision to sell key star to Man United
The Chelsea legend raises questions about Nemanja Matic's move to Manchester United in the summer transfer window
Frank Lampard has questioned Chelsea’s decision to sell Nemanja Matic to Manchester United this summer.
The Premier League champions signed Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko in a £40m deal from Ligue 1 holders AS Monaco to bolster their midfield options ahead of the new season.
Bakayoko’s arrival appeared to trigger the sale of Matic to Manchester United in a £40m deal in the summer transfer window in spite of the Serbia international’s important contribution last term.
Matic’s departure means Chelsea are shot on midfield options with 23-year-old Bakayoko still sidelined following a knee operation earlier this summer.
Cesc Fabregas and N’Golo Kante started in the centre of park as Chelsea lost to Arsenal on penalties in the Community Shield at Wembley on Sunday afternoon.
Chelsea’s record goal-scorer Lampard admitted that he was surprised to see Matic move to Manchester United as Chelsea helped to provide their rivals with a key piece for Jose Mourinho’s team.
“It’s a strange one,” Lampard told BT Sport on Sunday evening.
“I think he was such a huge part of Chelsea’s play last year. Kante and Matic were the base of the midfield and let the wing-backs fly on.
“Obviously Fabregas was a big player for them too and [with] Bakayoko, it remains to be seen if he can be that positional player Matic was.
“One of the frustrations is that, and I think Conte will want to bring in someone else in midfield.”
Matic won the Premier League twice and the EFL Cup during his second spell at the west London club following his return from Portuguese side Benfica in January 2014.
Chelsea have signed Willy Caballero, AS Roma defender Antonio Rudiger, Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata and Bakayoko in the summer transfer window so far.