The club confirmed Lampard’s departure on Monday morning.
Chelsea have sacked Frank Lampard. The Blues announced his departure in a statement, saying that it was a ‘difficult decision’, but ‘not one that the owner and the Board have taken lightly’.
Lampard, a Chelsea legend and the club’s all-time top goalscorer, had been in charge of the team since the summer of 2019. He helped Chelsea qualify for the Champions League in his first season, but the side’s form dramatically dipped this season.
Chelsea’s struggles this season.
Lampard oversaw a massive transfer spending spree in the summer, with the club spending over €200m on new players. However, the former Derby County coach failed to construct a cohesive team from the players as his disposal. Summer signings Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, in particular, have flattered to deceive.
Chelsea were top of the Premier League table following a 3-1 win against Leeds United on December 5. Since then, they have won just two league matches and are currently in ninth place – level on points with Aston Villa, who have two games in hand.
Thomas Tuchel, the former Paris Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund coach, is reportedly set to succeed Lampard.
Frank Lampard leaves Chelsea with the worst Premier League points-per-game record of any manager under Roman Abramovich… pic.twitter.com/Bn4bOoKQWE
— Amazon Prime Video Sport (@primevideosport) January 25, 2021
Why Chelsea sacked Lampard.
Since Lampard’s dismissal, behind the scenes details have emerged, and according to The Atheltic, trouble has been brewing at Stamford Bridge for some time.
The report states that there was tension between Lampard and the Chelsea hierarchy, particularly director Marina Granovskaia, who effectively runs the club for Roman Abramovich.
Lampard was determined to sign Declan Rice.
Lampard and members of the board are said to have disagreed over some of Chelsea’s transfers. The former Manchester City midfielder was reportedly very keen to sign Declan Rice from West Ham United.
The Chelsea hierarchy, however, had ‘reservations’ about signing someone they released as a teenager, viewing it as potentially ’embarrassing’ to spend a big transfer fee on a former Chelsea academy player.
He was also reportedly blocked in his attempt to bring Ireland legend Shay Given to Chelsea as a goalkeeper coach. Lampard and Given worked together at Derby.
Lampard and his relationship with some Chelsea players.
There was said to be tension between Lampard and some of the club’s first-team players, particularly Kepa Arrizabalaga, the Spanish goalkeeper signed from Atheltic Bilbao for €80m in 2018.
Kepa’s form drastically dipped under Lampard, who pushed hard for a replacement. Chelsea signed Edouard Mendy and dropped Kepa to the bench. The Spanish ‘keeper is said to have felt that Lampard ‘did not provide him with clear tactical instructions’ or offer enough support as his confidence evaporated.
There was reportedly a feeling that Lampard did not provide his team with sufficient ‘tactical instructions’ and that ‘some were just told to simply go out on the pitch and express themselves’.
Lampard will surely have his say on what went wrong in due course.
What next for Lampard.
Following Chelsea’s victory over Luton Town in the FA Cup on Sunday, Lampard said that he is a ‘fighter’ and that he could have taken an easier route by continuing to work as a football pundit, but he wants to be a football manager. So he may return to the dugout sooner rather than later.
The former England midfielder helped blood several talented young Chelsea players last season, but leaves the club with the worst points per game record of any Chelsea manager in the Abramovich era.