Difficult it was but Chelsea manage to pass an acid test at the Stamford Bridge on Tuesday as Olivier Giroud towered his way through to head the Blues to a 1-0 home win over Norwich to boost their Champions League qualification hopes.
The French nodded in Christian Pulisic’s cross, easing Chelsea’s lingering pain from Saturday’s 3-0 humbling at Sheffield United.
The Blues had no business wasting such an unexpected opportunity to cement third place in the table against the already-relegated Canaries, and boss Lampard knew as much – making five changes from the weekend’s frustrating defeat, but the win did not come on a silver plate for Chelsea.
For much of the first half both Chelsea and Giroud appeared to be heading for an agonising evening, but then the France hitman headed home and the entire mood around Stamford Bridge changed.
Chelsea now boast a four-point lead on both fourth-placed Leicester and United in fifth, though both those teams have an extra game left to play.
Former Ajax winger – Hakim Ziyech was in the stands to watch his new team-mates, with the Morocco forward already training with the Blues ahead of being available for action next term.