Frank Lampard started his managerial career at Derby County and impressed in his first season as he took them to the Championship play-off final against Aston Villa. Lampard, who won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and the Champions League with Chelsea was the heavy favourite to replace Maurizio Sarri after the Italian decided to take up the job at Juventus. Lampard did a great job of securing Champions League football in his first season at Chelsea, as academy players such as Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and Reece James were given opportunities to showcase their talents.
Speaking to Eddie Hearn’s No Passion No Point podcast on BBC Sounds, Lampard said he knew he risked damaging his legacy as a player at Chelsea by becoming the manager. The Chelsea manager added “The facts and reality is I realise now it’s much harder than playing in terms of it being consuming. The life of a manager is 25 people in the squad, staff in the building, problems with different departments. It’s so far removed from football. When you work for your coaching badges, you have to put time in. Then when you start doing it, you have to practise, you have to fail, get better, fail and have relationships with people you never had as a player.
Players can easily sit there and say they want to be a manager, then they start the road and say: ‘Actually, I want to be a pundit.’ I respect it because being a pundit is tough as well but in terms of management I wanted to test the water. A manager gets 50 problems a day. It’s much more consuming but I love it and couldn’t live without it.
I can be really open that it helped me get the job – playing 13 years at the club helped me get the job. I had to put my ego at the door a bit and say that I might ruin what I achieved in 13 years to a degree – because if it doesn’t go well, I will be judged harshly and quickly. I am so driven personally that my biggest fear is myself. If I try to pull the wool over your eyes as Chelsea manager, it’s not going to work. My football career put me in a decent position. So if that job is taken away from me, as long as I go in thinking ‘can I do the best job?’ then I think that if I have done the best I can, I will be pretty happy.”