Frank Lampard will make his Champions League debut as a manager on Tuesday

Frank Lampard believes Chelsea can flourish in the Champions League but is not yet looking any further than reaching the knockout stages.

The Blues host Valencia in their Group H opener on Tuesday.

Lampard’s faith in youth is appearing to pay off in the Premier League after his side thumped Wolves 5-2 on Saturday, but he knows European football is a different challenge.

“I’m confident but very aware of the dangers,” he said.

“Our target is to qualify from a tough group. It is different [from league football]; the main thing is that the concentration levels throughout the game have to be spot on. The different level can surprise you.

“I have belief in the players. I think we have talent that can blossom in the Champions League.

Lampard won the Champions League as a player in 2012 and the former midfielder is looking forward to making his debut in the competition as a manager.

“I had some incredible nights in the Champions League, and some bad ones,” he added.

“It’s the ultimate in club football. There is something about Stamford Bridge, Champions League football and that music.

“I will be proud to do it.”

Rudiger misses out for Chelsea

Lampard helped Chelsea lift the Champions League trophy seven years ago

The Blues will be without defender Antonio Rudiger after he tweaked his groin during Saturday’s win at Wolves – his first appearance of the season.

Midfielder N’Golo Kante and Callum Hudson-Odoi are “fit, but not match fit”, according to Lampard, and so will not feature against the La Liga side.

Valencia will be led by Albert Celades, who was appointed last week after the surprise sacking of Marcelino.

Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga is wary the change in management could make the Spanish side more of a threat.

“I think Valencia will always be a dangerous team,” he said.

“At times, these circumstances can make you a more dangerous proposition.”



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