Edouard Mendy transfer latest, benching Kai Havertz, Barkley future: Chelsea behind the scenes

What’s the latest on Edouard Mendy?

Frank Lampard chose his words very carefully last night when asked if the Rennes goalkeeper had a medical, while the head coach also skirted around Kepa’s latest error, but there remains a confidence that a deal will be completed soon.

Is Lampard under genuine pressure to win the title?

There’s a pressure for them to close it significantly but the gap from last season was so big – 33 points to Liverpool – that it would take both the champions and Man City to regress significantly for Chelsea to win it. The new faces have had little time to gel so it could take a while for it to click and, considering the points tally in the past three seasons, there is little room to play with.

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How big a role does Ross Barkley have to play under Frank Lampard this season? The team looked so much better once he replaced Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

Agree with that. Barkley finished last season pretty well and they improved when he came on last night. Loftus-Cheek is a concern. The injury and subsequent recovery has been difficult but he looked short of confidence and really lacking sharpness last night. Given the chance that XI again, Lampard would surely start Barkley?

Who could Lampard replace Havertz with for the Liverpool game? He said he needs time, so is it perhaps better to play someone with more PL experience against the champions?

Really struggle to see Havertz being dropped but it would be Barkley or maybe Hudson-Odoi if Chelsea go wider. Also, by time I think Lampard was referring to fitness and sharpness having only had four training sessions before last night. Plus, despite that pass, Havertz’s work ethic and tracking back was very impressive last night.

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Does Mendy come straight into the starting XI (if he signs) after another Kepa mistake?

Yes,…