Chelsea’s two-window transfer ban put them at a disadvantage during the summer transfer window as they were not able to strengthen the squad after the departure of key players including Eden Hazard to Real Madrid.
However, the same embargo has contributed to the promotion of younger graduates such as Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham, who have been responsible for scoring the goals during the opening four league games.
Still, there has been a genuine weakness in the defensive scheme of things where Cesar Azpilicueta has looked far from his best from the right-back spot while the centre-backs have also disappointed.
The injury comeback of Antonio Rudiger may ease the woes at the heart of the defence but there appears the need to re-assess the position of skipper Azpilicueta, who has been poor with his positioning.
Amidst this, a report from The Mirror has claimed that the Blues ‘expect‘ to overcome their ban at the turn of the year and that could present an interesting turn of events when the transfer window reopens in January.
From his time at Derby County, Lampard has earned the reputation of grooming young players and he has not been afraid of following the same trend after taking charge of the Blues this season.
In the normal case, Lampard may consider deploying the young Reece James ahead of Azpilicueta but the potential uplifting of the embargo presents the chance to pursue an experienced recruit.
Lampard may not necessarily strengthen the squad at the turn of the year but that comes with a potential risk, considering it could be the difference between finishing in or out of the top four.
James, who is currently in training following an ankle injury, has received glowing remarks after a standout season on loan with Wigan Athletic last season, but he has yet to make his debut for the Blues.
One can argue that Mount was in a similar situation earlier this summer but James certainly has a tougher test ahead, considering there are expectations on him to deliver, should Azpilicueta get the chop.
Lampard has another three-and-a-half months to monitor his squad ahead of the New Year and it will be interesting to see whether the 41-year-old will stick or twist from his ambition of developing young players.