Frank Lampard has laid down the gauntlet on his underperforming stars after Chelsea’s defeat to Arsenal on Boxing Day.
The Blues succumbed to a 3-1 defeat to their London rivals at the Emirates in disappointing fashion.
It continues a miserable run of form, where they have lost three of their last four Premier League matches.
Chelsea could have gone second but on Saturday but could end up eighth if results do not go their way today.
And, despite a number of players missing for Arsenal, the home side looked in complete control throughout.
The Gunners went ahead through a controversial decision to award a penalty after minor contact from Reece James.
© Pool via REUTERS Chelsea lost 3-1 to Arsenal
But Alexandre Lacazette struck from the spot to give Arsenal the lead and soon after Granit Xhaka netted a free-kick.
Bukayo Saka added to the scoreline after the break before a late consolation from Tammy Abraham.
And Lampard was absolutely fuming with his players after the match, blaming them for the defeat.
He told talkSPORT: “I can’t defend the first half because they lacked the basics of football.
“The message was clear to the players. It was to be a tough game against a team that’s fighting, a team of quality, a team that would give everything for a London derby.
© Chelsea FC via Getty Images Lampard was fuming with Chelsea
“The players have to take responsibility for that first half.”
When asked why Chelsea did not perform, Lampard added: “I can’t answer that because some things you can reflect on in terms of tactics, preparation and all these things but in terms of effort it’s something that just has to be a given in football. The players got it wrong.”
The Blues boss was not done yet, though, branding his players lazy in another rant.
“I am angry because I want us to win games,” he said.
“We were lazy to give away a penalty, lazy to give away a free-kick that Xhaka puts in the top corner and I am very, very disappointed in the way we approached the first half because some things in football are basics.
“It is not tactics or systems, it is do you want to run, back your team-mate out and sprint? Or do you want to jog and say ‘maybe I don’t have to run’, and we took that decision instead of the right one.”