How Declan Rice pursuit contributed to Frank Lampard's Chelsea sacking
Frank Lampard is out as Chelsea manager.
After 56 games in charge of Chelsea, Frank Lampard was on Monday sacked by the club at which he was a legend as a player. Sitting ninth in the table and having lost three crucial matches in recent weeks, it comes as no surprise to see him go.
A statement issued by the club confirming his sacking wished Lampard well, and owner Roman Abramovich spoke of how difficult it was to sack someone with which he has an "excellent personal relationship".
But, according to a report released today by The Athletic, the writing had been on the wall for Lampard for some time, with a breakdown in key relationships and a lack of tactical instruction for players central to his departure.
According to the report, Lampard's relationship with director Marina Granovskaia completely deteriorated in recent times. A key figure at Stamford Bridge, little gets done without Granovskaia's knowledge or approval.
So dismal had the situation become at the club, that Lampard's job had reportedly been offered on an interim basis to the influential German coach and football executive Ralf Rangnick.
He turned down the chance, which only offered him four months in the job, and the club have instead gone for his compatriot Thomas Tuchel, who is expected to take over from Lampard.
Another key issue which The Athletic says contributed to Lampard's sacking was his desire to re-sign Declan Rice from West Ham. Lampard publicly pursued the midfielder during the summer, a situation which angered management.
"He needs to stop pushing for Rice or he’ll lose his job. The hierarchy are very wary about the potential embarrassment of buying back an academy reject at huge expense,” a source told them in December.
In the end, it appears it was a combination of factors which led to Lampard's dismissal, with the fallout unlikely to end any time soon.