Journalist Reveals what Lampard told Abramovich

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Chelsea are in search of a new manager after Maurizio Sarri departed the club to become the manager of Juventus.

Despite winning the Europa League and leading the team to third place in the Premier League, Sarri called it quits at Chelsea after just a year in England.

Club legend Frank Lampard is being linked with the vacant Chelsea job and he is the favourite for the job.

Lampard is wanted by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to take over from Sarri after a brilliant first year as a manager, as he led Derby County to the play-off final, losing to Aston Villa 2-1 in a tightly contested final.

Journalist Duncan Castles has revealed that Lampard ‘had reservations about returning to Chelsea so early in his managerial career’ because of their history of sacking managers in rapid fashion. But he spoke at length with Abramovich who assured him of his job.

“I think Roman Abramovich and I think Chelsea have been very clever and very strategic here,” Castles said on The Transfer Window podcast.

“We’ve told you on the podcast for some time now that Frank Lampard had reservations about returning to Chelsea so early in his managerial career, and there are obvious reservations because of the risk of going to a club that has a history of sacking managers.

“They have that transfer-window ban, so you can’t do anything in the market this summer. The squad has not been happy. They won the Europa League, yes. They managed to qualify for the Champions League, but the support was very unhappy with performances on the field and the actions of the club last season.

“So all of those things added up to ‘do I want to go one year into what I intend to be a very long management career, to a club which has a history of sacking managers, where managers have a history of getting very little time to demonstrate their values? A club where players have a history of undermining the manager and having him changed when things go wrong? Is that too big a risk for me?’”

He continued: “I think what Abramovich has done there, he’s gone directly to Frank Lampard – who he had a very good relationship with when he was his player – explained why he wants him at the club and assured him that he understands the difficulties Chelsea are in at the moment and that he will have at least two seasons in which to demonstrate his value as a manager.

“He will get the summer transfer window for the 2020/21 season and the winter window.

“It works for Chelsea as well, because it takes the pressure away from the club of appointing a manager, because they know that this manager is the most popular appointment they can make. Frank Lampard is a loved individual at Chelsea for what he did on the football field for them and how is as a person, an intelligent man who presents himself well, who will be a good spokesman for the club.

“But from the club’s perspective, it will buy them time. Because if things go wrong next season with what has to be a make-shift squad because they cannot buy, with a squad that’s probably gonna involve a lot of academy, development players that Chelsea have been trying to promote to their first team for a long time, [they] will now have to be used.

“So the chances are that that could be a difficult first season for Frank Lampard on the football field. But the fans will give him time to perform there.

“From Chelsea’s perspective, that saves them money. They don’t have to spend in the transfer market, because they can’t spend in the transfer market. They haven’t appealed that ban, I think because they’re happy to go along this route.

“Abramovich has always wanted as many academy players in the first team as possible. This gives him an excuse to have those academy players promoted into the first team with, let’s face it, an assistant manager Jody Morris who was the successful coach of the academy team for several years.

“So you’re bringing in an assistant coach who knows the players, knows their qualities, has worked with them before, in many ways an ideal person to promote them into the first team.

“You’ve got a manager who has worked with academy players at Derby County successfully and got good performances with them, almost getting them promoted into the Premier League.”

About the Author

Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.