The Legend Returns: Chelsea Appoint Frank Lampardby Jack Kitson / 04 July 2019, 09:16Tweet
The wait is over. Frank Lampard has completed his switch from Derby County to Chelsea after the clubs agreed on a compensation fee.
Lampard, whose Derby side came within one win of Premier League promotion last season, has signed a three-year deal - believed to be worth £4m-a-year - to seal a sensational return to his beloved Chelsea, bringing with him another Blues favourite in assistant manager Jody Morris.
In the process Chelsea’s all-time goalscorer becomes the 12th manager to work under billionaire owner Roman Abramovich since he purchased the club 16 years ago. The former midfielder is also the club’s first English gaffer this century; you have to venture back to the period between 1993 and 1996 when fellow countryman Glenn Hoddle was in charge in a player-manager capacity.
Lampard, 41, has replaced Maurizio Sarri who was lured back to Italy with Juventus last month after only a year at helm. A third-place finish and Europa League triumph under his tutorship does, however, mean that Chelsea will return to the Champions League next season, albeit without superstar Eden Hazard who sealed a five-year move to Real Madrid.
In fact, Chelsea won’t be able to sign a player until the summer of 2020, although the club were able to make Mateo Kovacic’s loan move from Real Madrid permanent, and back in January they captured American Christian Pulisic, who will make his debut in August.
The inexperienced Lampard may represent somewhat of a risk given that he only has one year under his managerial belt, however he’s so far proved to be an intelligent, punctual, passionate, and astute boss who undoubtedly has an exciting future ahead of him. He’s expected to be given time to implement his own brand of football, and is likely to give the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi, Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and co the chance to shine in the first team.
Lampard will be fully aware that there’s been a couple of managerial hiccups under Abramovich, notably Luiz Felipe Scolari and Andre Villas-Boas. Afterall, he did play under both. But more often than not the appointments have thrived; winning a combined five Premier League titles, the Champions League, two Europa League honours, and eight major domestic cups. Lampard will hope he can add to the trophy cabinet.
Meanwhile, Derby are expected to replace Lampard with Phillip Cocu, the former PSV manager who led the club to three Dutch titles.
Chelsea Managers in the Roman Abramovich Era
Jose Mourinho (x2)
Luiz Felipe Scolari
Guus Hiddink (x2)
Roberto Di Matteo