Frank Lampard’s transfer masterstroke that did not cost Chelsea a penny amid £200m splurge

So many new faces have arrived at Stamford Bridge this summer one wonders if Frank Lampard knows everyone’s name in the Chelsea dressing room.

No fewer than six new signings have been made by the Blues for the 2020/21 season, with Kai Havertz and Timo Werner playing both Premier League games so far.

One new boy who has not featured though is Thiago Silva. Unlike Havertz and Werner, Silva hasn’t arrived at Chelsea with the burden of a big transfer fee, signing as a free agent after leaving Paris Saint-Germain at the end of last season, but the Brazilian does arrive in the Premier League with a big reputation.

Silva has proved himself over a number of years as one of the best central defenders of his generation. Now 35 years old, the Brazilian is well into the twilight of his career, but is still operating at an exceptionally high level. It was only last month that he started a Champions League final.

Injured for the Blues’ season opener against Brighton and not ready for the game against Liverpool, Silva will make his debut in the Carabao Cup clash with Barnsley on Wednesday night, with Ben Chilwell also expected to play a part.

“I think Thiago Silva is the one player we’ve bought in at the end of his career,” Lampard told NBC Sports (via the Metro ) when asked to explain the thinking behind Silva’s signing. “But I had no worries about bringing him in because when I watched him in the Champions League run to the final he looked fit and lean and every bit the player that I know Thiago Silva to be.

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“So he also will then bring us the experience of playing in winning teams and what it takes to win. ‘I hope he can lead from the back in terms of how he holds himself and communicates with others around him because we have younger players in and around him. And hopefully that will address some of the defensive problems…