Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Lampard ´immensely proud´ of Chelsea return but won´t rest on laurels

SoccerNews in English Premier League 4 Jul 2019

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Frank Lampard vowed not to let past glories blur his focus on bringing fresh success to Chelsea after returning to the club as head coach.

Blues icon Lampard, 41, completed his return to Stamford Bridge on Thursday, signing a three-year contract to succeed Maurizio Sarri.

The Premier League outfit reportedly paid around £4million in compensation to release the ex-England international from his contract at Derby County, where he spent one season as manager.

Lampard scored a club-record 211 goals during 13 silverware-laden years at Chelsea as a player and hopes to continue that legacy in his new role.

“I am immensely proud to be returning to Chelsea as head coach,” Lampard said.

“Everyone knows my love for this club and the history we have shared, however, my sole focus is on the job in hand and preparing for the season ahead.

“I am here to work hard, bring further success to the club and I cannot wait to get started.”

Lampard, who has no managerial experience beyond reaching the Championship play-off final in his lone season at Derby, represents something of a gamble for a club that has become renowned for ruthlessness.

Sarri struggled to gain the backing of the supporters during a brief, turbulent period in charge despite delivering Europa League success and a top-four finish in the Premier League.

Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia said: “It gives us great pleasure to welcome Frank back to Chelsea as head coach.

“Frank possesses fantastic knowledge and understanding of the club and last season he demonstrated he is one of the most talented young coaches in the game.

“After 13 years with us as a player, where he became a club legend and our record goalscorer, we believe this is the perfect time for him to return and are delighted he has done so.

“We will do everything we can to ensure he has all the support required to be a huge success.”

Derby owner Mel Morris, meanwhile, wished Lampard success after taking up a “huge opportunity” at Stamford Bridge.

“As a club, we have enjoyed an excellent working relationship with Chelsea recently and would like that to continue moving forward,” Morris said in a statement.

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