Ross Barkley is not the darling of Chelsea fans right now after his missed penalty cost Chelsea a point in the Blues Champions League loss to Valencia at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night.
The England international incurred the wrath of Blues faithfuls after taking the spot-kick ahead of Willian and Jorginho who are assumed to be Chelsea first choice takers.
However, Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard has come out to defend Barkley, saying he is the club’s first-choice penalty taker following his successful conversion rate during pre-season.
Speaking after the loss to Los Ches, Lampard said; “Ross has been the penalty taker in pre-season and scored a couple. He has been when he started.
He was when he came on today and he missed it. That is the clear story. I don’t know what the conversation was, but Jorginho and Willian were the takers on the pitch. When Ross comes on he becomes the penalty taker.”
The former Derby manager also revealed the loss was a harsh lesson for Chelsea on their return to champions league football. “I think we created enough in the game,” said the Chelsea manager. “Not lots of fantastic chances, but good chances.
Obviously a penalty and we conceded from the one shot on target, so it was a harsh lesson in Champions League football – a game we played pretty well in and we lose it. The good news is we have five games left in the group.”
The Blues will hope to bounce back on matchday two when they travel to France to take on Lille. However, they face a tough clash against Liverpool in the Premier League this weekend.