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Cup win can launch Blues’ title tilt

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LONDON • Frank Lampard believes Chelsea should be aiming to fight for league titles every year, but winning the FA Cup today could be a building block towards a title challenge next season.

In his first season in charge, the club great has guided the Blues into the Champions League next season despite the loss of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid and a one-window transfer ban to contend with.

Chelsea are already making up for lost time in the transfer market with big-money signings Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech in place.

With Lampard's men facing an uphill task in the Champions League – they trail Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich 3-0 ahead of the second leg of their last-16 tie next Saturday – the Cup appears to be their only chance of silverware this season.

But the 42-year-old does not want his side to think a trophy is the be-all and end-all – rather, they should be competing on all fronts.

At his virtual pre-match press conference yesterday, Lampard, who is gunning for his first managerial honour, said: "It's a nice boost but it will only mean anything going forward if we take it in our pocket, move forward and improve as a club and on the training pitch.

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"In the last few years, we haven't been able to fight for that league title so it doesn't mean all of sudden we are back, but it will be a nice, small step when you consider where we want to get to."

He confirmed that N'Golo Kante had recovered from a hamstring injury that kept him out of their last six games, while Willian is fit again for what could be his final game for the club. The Brazil forward's contract expires at the end of the season, but Lampard claimed he would have no qualms naming him in his line-up at Wembley despite rumours that Arsenal might be his next destination.

On the 31-year-old, he said: "I've known Willian for many years now, as a player and now as his coach. So I would expect nothing less than he's shown already, and that's Willian for you."

While Lampard is hopeful victory can spur his team to new heights, Arsenal, who can play in the Europa League next term only if they win the Cup, are in the early stages of rebuilding under Mikel Arteta.

Critics feel his side wilRead More – Source