Chelsea: Lampard admits lethargy in Arsenal defeat
Chelsea could be about to bring the axe down on Frank Lampard. BILD in Germany have claimed Roman Abramovich is mulling over whether to make yet another managerial change, with the Blues inconsistent in the Premier League this term. And the struggles of Kai Havertz and Timo Werner could be behind his current stance – if history is anything to go by.
Chelsea went into the season with such high hopes.
Having forked out on the likes of Havertz and Werner, as well as Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell and Edouard Mendy, Abramovich felt his side would be competing for the Premier League title this term.
While Chelsea aren’t exactly a club in crisis, however, recent results have left much to be desired.
Lampard has failed to get his new signings to gel, with the west London giants losing three of their last four matches in the top flight.
They lost 1-0 to Everton on December 12 before falling to yet another defeat against Wolves a few days later.
Chelsea did manage to beat West Ham but were ruthlessly put to the sword by Arsenal on Saturday night, with the Gunners winning 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium.
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Now, Thomas Tuchel could be in line to take over.
The German was sacked by Paris Saint-Germain on Christmas Eve after overseeing a turbulent start to the current campaign. Their Ligue 1 title is genuinely under threat – which is why they’ve not hesitated to pull the trigger.
And Werner and Havertz’s struggles in the capital could be behind Abramovich’s stance.
History suggests that, when the Blues owner doesn’t see enough bang for his buck, he gets ruthless pretty quickly. Lampard may be a club legend – but sentiment doesn’t come into the equation.
After signing the likes of Joe Coles, Juan Sebastian Veron, Hernan Crespo, Claude Makelele, Wayne Bridge, Glen Johnson and Adrian Mutu back in 2003 upon taking charge, Abramovich expected the title.
Instead, Arsenal won the prize without losing a single game and Claudio Ranieri was sacked, accused of not doing enough to coax the best from his new recruits.
Chelsea were successful under Jose Mourinho but, when he failed to get Andriy Shevchenko going, Abramovich sacked him too.
The Russian had pushed the boat out to sign Shevchenko but Mourinho never wanted him and, consequently, things were destined to fail.
It didn’t matter that Mourinho had turned the Blues into a formidable force within the English game. Shevchenko was an expensive present – and one the Chelsea owner didn’t want to fail.
In 2010, the Blues supremo funded a huge £50m deal for Fernando Torres when Carlo Ancelotti was in charge.
But Ancelotti was sacked despite only narrowly missing out on the title to United, with Abramovich also frustrated by the Italian’s failure to help Torrres reach his Liverpool best.
Now, fast forward to the modern day, and it seems like history could be about to repeat itself.
Werner has failed to kick on in English football, with the former RB Leipzig star only scoring four times from 15 appearances in the Premier League.
But it’s the struggles of Havertz that are most concerning.
It was Abramovich, rather than Lampard, who pushed for the £75m signing of the Germany international.
Yet it’s Lampard who has struggled when it comes to getting Havertz to his Bayer Leverkusen best, with the playmaker only managing two goal involvements from 13 league matches.
Abramovich may think Tuchel stands a better chance at kickstarting Havertz and Werner into life given they’re all from the same country.
And whether Lampard can ease the mounting pressure on his shoulders with victory over Villa on Monday night remains to be seen.
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