The suspension of football during the ongoing of the CoVID-19 has given Frank Lampard to sit back and analyze his first season back home at Chelsea as manager.
“I don’t want to jump the gun because what Liverpool and Manchester City have done has been clear; I’d be a fool to suggest we can bridge that gap quickly because there has been a lot of hard work at those clubs in terms of recruitment of top players, of great coaches,” Lampard told Sky Sports’ The Football Show.
“We have to be part of that process. We have to do it our way, we can’t try to copy. We have had experienced players around this year to help the youngsters but we know there are little areas within the squad… some of that’s what we have on the ground here already, some of that is how we might look to recruit.
“What’s going on in the world has made it very difficult to plan on that front. But going into this break I certainly felt we were moving in the right direction and with continued progress and work on the training ground, as well as potentially bringing in some players in key areas to try and help us bridge that gap, yes, I’ve got a strong belief that we can [challenge].”
However, what do we think then of Lampard?
First of all, he accepted the role at a time no top manager would have touched the club with a 10-feet pole. Chelsea had just lost Eden Hazard, the only talismanic player in an otherwise ageing and under-filled squad. To make matters worse, they had been hit with a two-window transfer ban.
Next up, was Lampard’s first ingenious move, albeit slightly forced, to introduce youngsters in plenty to the Chelsea first team. The Blues have always had a brilliant academy and managers and the club previously faced the heat of criticism for not being able to utilize that pool of talent.
Lampard has given Chelsea a group of talented young players like Fikayo Tomori, Billy Gilmour, Reece James, Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and more who all will develop in all probability to brilliant players for Chelsea. Most importantly, in an expensively inflated market, he has done it for free.
Last but not the least, Lampard has done all this while at the same time managing to keep the Blues in the fourth spot, a Champions League qualification race.
Lampard has now already taken the next steps to build on this team and is looking more pumped than ever. If we are to rate this man’s first season so far – we have to accept that Lampard has done exactly what he used to do as a player – work, work and work and come up with some astonishing moments in between.