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“He’s had a good season”

Frank Lampard has made just two changes this evening to take on Arsenal, with one enforced.

Emerson Palmieri plays at left back, with Cesar Azpilicueta sliding over to right back. But the switch in midfield is voluntary, and Lampard was asked about it before the game.

He dropped Mason Mount, who has had a poor run, for Mateo Kovacic, who slots into the midfield three.

Our writer recorded the quotes that are available on the Fifth Stand app (which you can’t link to, unfortunately):

“They’re different players. Mason has played a lot. Kovacic has been out a bit recently, but he’s played in a lot of big games. He’s had a good season.” – Lampard explains the switch.

— Will Faulks (@willfaulks) January 21, 2020

We expected this move. Mason’s form has been poor and there was no reason to leave out Kovacic, who by contrast has been brilliant when given the chance this season.

“Kovacic has been out a bit recently but he’s played a lot of big games. He’s had a good season,” the manager commented.

Mount remains a dangerous option on the bench. We’re quite depleted with injuries at the moment, and there’s hardly a wealth of game-changers on there.

Mount is one of them. It might just be the game he’s left out of, he gets to come on and make the difference.

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