Chelsea face Manchester United tomorrow, and there are a lot of fans, myself included, who would love to see Hakim Ziyech start the match.
However, Frank Lampard, and the player himself, have both said he isn’t quite match fit yet, which is why he is settling with second half cameo roles for now.
Lampard says Hakim Ziyech and Edouard Mendy are examples of characters that he wants in his squad. Adds that Ziyech isn't match fit yet, despite being physically fit. "We need to find ways to give Hakim minutes as best we can." #CFC
— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) October 23, 2020
These comments from Frank likely mean that Ziyech starts on the bench once again tomorrow, but I have no problem with this.
After being injured all season, and having only made two substitute appearances so far, rushing him back into a starting role and asking him to play too much at once, could easily bring on another injury, or re-aggravate the the recent one.
The fact is, tired muscles are more prone to injury. So easing Ziyech’s muscles back in slowly is the correct thing to do.
Ziyech is going to be a massively important player for Lampard this season, arguably his most important player. It is essential that he is fully match fit before being given more than a half an hour cameo, to avoid further injury.
Can you imagine the meltdown if Ziyech started tomorrow, and then got injured? It would be rife.
But Lampard will do what he feels is best regardless, based off the advice of his medical staff, and also listening to the player himself, who has admitted he is not yet match fit.
It is a rare luxury for Lampard to have a fully fit squad (all bar Billy Gilmour), so he will be trying to manage this now and keep that fully fit squad going into the rest of the season.