Frank Lampard left the Blues this summer, with a host of winners medals under his belt after 13 years of service at Stamford Bridge.
He signed a contract with soon-to-be MLS franchise New York City FC, and then immediately joined Premier League rivals Manchester City on a short-term loan deal.
The man tasked with replacing Lampard’s influence in West London is Brazilian international Oscar, now in his third year with Chelsea. Primarily an attacking midfielder, the 23-year-old displays a maturity beyond his years in his gameplay, something that has seen him win 40 caps for his country despite his incredibly young age.
Able to fulfil roles in both attacking and defensive capacities, Oscar’s versatility has made him a key part of Jose Mourinho’s first-team squad in a way that Lampard never could be, and we take a look at whether the Blues made the right decision in letting the club record goalscorer leave over the summer.
|Mins Played||Goals||Assists||Mins per Key Passes||Mins per Touch||Passing Accuracy||Appearances|
Lampard has played almost 300 fewer minutes than Oscar this season, but he has managed to net one more goal than his Brazilian counterpart, proving his amazing ability to find the back of the net with a precise directness. However, his link up play has proven to be less fruitful, failing to play a single key pass this season, and falling down on his pass completion rate in comparison to the less direct - but more creative - Oscar.
They both touch the ball at a similar rate, with Lampard receiving it slightly more often than Oscar, although he has fewer minutes to factor into his equation.
As offensive forces, the pair offer consistently strong attacking threats, although one would prefer Lampard as a goalscorer and Oscar as a provider. However, with the modern number 10 charged with providing support all around the pitch, it is only fair to compare how their defensive stats match up.
|Mins per Tackle||Mins per Clearance||Mins per Duel Won||Mins per Interception|
Surprisingly given Lampard’s age, and the supposed defensive ability of Oscar, the Englishman dominates the tackles won column, completing a tackle at almost twice the rate of Oscar, and doing the same when tasked with intercepting the ball.
He slightly falls down when it comes to winning duels, with the younger midfielder succeeding with one at a rate of three minutes more often.
Where Lampard struggles in comparison to Oscar is his rate of clearing the ball from danger areas. With his age preventing the covering of the same amount of distance as Oscar, Lampard is forced to defend high up the pitch, whereas the Brazilian is often found in his own area as much as the opposition area, and he effectively clears the ball from danger at a rate better than 2-to-1 in comparison.
Many Blues fans were disappointed to see Lampard leave the club over the summer, with claims that the club were ripping the heart out of Stamford Bridge. And with his goalscoring exploits in Manchester, there may be a claim that Jose Mourinho made the wrong decision in choosing to dismiss him from the playing squad. However, the man replacing him as Chelsea’s number eight has stepped into his vacancy and looks to be staking a claim to become a club legend in his own right. Oscar can only improve with time, and, with Lampard getting older and older, there is no need to persist with the man preventing the Brazilian star from getting more first-team action under his belt.