December 2, 2021

‘Our aim is to be No 1’ – Mount urges Chelsea to aim high and make Premier League title challenge

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The Blues midfielder has issued a rallying cry while urging his team to not take their good start for granted

Mason Mount has called on Chelsea to push for the Premier League title this season, after a run of five wins in a row sees the club just two points away from top spot.

The most recent win over Newcastle saw Chelsea briefly go top of the table , but rivals Tottenham and Liverpool leapfrogged the Blues again to leave them in third.

After Tuesday’s away Champions League clash with Rennes, Mount’s side will welcome Spurs to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

The 21-year-old says that his side are aiming to achieve glory this season in the league, and not settle for just a brief good spell domestically and in Europe.

“It’s always been our goal [to win the title],” Mount said in a pre-match press conference. “We know what we can achieve, and we know the level of the players in this group.

“We can never be content with being top of the group in the Champions League and going to the top of the league and being around it; we can never be content with that. We know what we can do and our goal is always to be No 1 and push for titles. We know we can do that.

“The most important thing at the moment is to try to keep the momentum going. Go from game to game and try to go into each one with the mentality of winning it. When you keep that going, you go into every game wanting to win.

“We are in a good place at the moment but we can’t get carried away. It is exciting times, but we’re so ready to keep working hard.”

Mount’s 13 starts and 14 appearances for Chelsea are the joint-most in the squad, which has seen him go and become an automatic starter under Gareth Southgate for the England national team.

Despite this growing reputation, the homegrown star has his detractors and Lampard moved again to dispel claims that he shows favouritism towards his midfielder.

“It is very easy for someone to sit on the phone and make very harsh statements,” Lampard said. “With Mason, I think maybe he looks clean-cut, he is doing an advert where he takes his top off and I think that’s about as edgy as he gets.

“He doesn’t do too many triple step-overs or flicks over the back of his head, as he shouldn’t do. He makes really efficient, clean and sharp passes. He presses as well as any midfielder that I have worked or trained alongside and he does 100 things within his game that impresses the managers that he works for.

“It is very easy to say [critical things] because he hasn’t got an Instagram reel of different flicks but it is a different type of football. It is easy to bracket him off and I don’t say that. When I say that, I don’t want to fuel the fire of people saying Mason is my son, because I know he has got a lot to improve on.

“That’s what takes you onto his attitude and desire to improve. He can score more goals, make more assists but he is a quality footballer who is only going to get better. That’s how I feel about him. Mason Mount, nor any player in this squad, is going to get favouritism from me.

“We need to have competition amongst everyone in the squad. Midfield and wide areas we have options and no one gets any edge from me other than on how they perform.”

That high praise from Lampard is appreciated by Mount, who is keen to take advantage of every opportunity he gets for both club and country.

In Chelsea’s academy and on his first loan at Vitesse , Mount was primarily seen as an attacking No 10 but he is increasingly moving into deeper roles.

Mount admits he has made subtle changes to his game ever since playing under Lampard while on loan with Derby County in the Championship.

“When I was in the academy I might have done a little trick here or there or a step-over, but as you get older I learned in the Championship, my first real experience of it, they don’t always come off and experienced players are going to read it,” he added.

“They know what you’re going to do and I think coming into the Premier League and Chelsea, being quick on the ball and knowing what you have got to do before the ball comes to you is the most important thing.

“As a midfielder, you are always going to have that pressure in there to move the ball quickly. We are playing in the Champions League and the best league in the world and the ball needs to move quicker than you do.

“I have definitely learned that especially last season as well. I have evolved my game to be quick, to know what to do when the ball comes to me. That is something I have learned over the last couple of years.”