Chelsea’s top four hopes and the stark Champions League reality Frank Lampard must address

Chelsea are currently fourth in the Premier League with 25 games played, although their position looks precarious.

Having not signed anyone in the January transfer window, after winning a legal appeal to enable them to register new players during the month, fatigue and a lack of fresh blood is a major concern.

Inconsistency continue to be an issue for Frank Lampard’s side and their lack of clinical finishing up top needs to be fixed.

Dries Mertens and Edinson Cavani were linked as relief up front to help a tiring Tammy Abraham.

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No Chelsea player has scored more than five goals in the league than the England striker, forcing him to carry that burden up front even when not fully fit.

This factor could play a key role in whether or not the Blues manage to keep hold of a Champions League place after returning to the competition last season by finishing third and winning the Europa League under Maurizio Sarri.

Lampard replaced the Italian in the summer and after forgoing transfers before his maiden campaign began, due to the transfer ban imposed on Chelsea, he has seemed none too pleased at the lack of business in January.

Not only is their attack losing steam, problems are being exposed at the back, with the west Londoners dropping points far too often to be comfortable.

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Chelsea matchday

Goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga has been poor at times between the sticks to compound errors in defence.

The potential is great in this young Chelsea side but the lack of investment in the winter, along with the transfer ban last summer, means that it’s going to be a real battle to end on a high.

Arsenal, Leicester City, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur, Wolverhampton Wanderers and even newly-promoted Sheffield United have all got in on the act this campaign.

Liverpool are already riding high as champions elect of the Premier…