Did James Corden get Frank Lampard the Chelsea job? Interim boss insists Todd Boehly deserves more 'respect'
- Lampard appointed as interim Potter successor
- Boehly reportedly sought Corden's advice
- Blues boss rubbished rumours, calling for "respect"
WHAT HAPPENED? The Blues legend was re-instated for his second stint at the helm following the sacking of Graham Potter earlier this month. Despite being fired as Chelsea boss after just 18 months in his first tenure, and later struggling with relegation-threatened Everton, Lampard was brought in by Boehly and Co. on an interim basis while the search for Potter's long-term replacement goes on. It was reported that this decision was made following advice from the English comedian Corden, but the Blues boss has come out to rubbish such notions.
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WHAT THEY SAID: Asked by reporters whether Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final opponents Real Madrid are in a 'League Of Their Own' - a play on words on Corden's sports gameshow - Lampard replied: "Wow. I saw the headline of James Corden and I am absolutely unaware of if it's true or not. It's obviously a great headline to put together casually from the outside. When I look at the success of Todd Boehly and the owners of Chelsea Football Club I think you have to respect that success and respect the idea that they'll make decisions based on more than a conversation with one person."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Lampard's first game after returning to west London wasn't a happy one, though, with his multiple system changes resulting in a dour 1-0 loss to Wolves on Saturday. Sitting 11th and a whopping 17 points off the top four, there seems to be little to play for in the league. Much of the focus of Lampard's tenure, then, will be on a valiant Champions League run and emulating the success under 2012-winning interim manager Roberto Di Matteo. Lampard, however, was quick to play down such comparisons.
"There are parallels in a simple sense," he added. "We are ex players, but the year Robbie was here he was assistant, he had a big awareness of the squad and got the job earlier in the year than I did. He did an amazing job. I think my situation is different in practice. I do have an awareness of the squad but not at close-hand to all of them. I think I have to be careful making that parallel because we have very tough games in front of us starting tomorrow. There's a lot of work to be done but we are very committed to making our own bit of history."
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WHAT NEXT? Indeed, just a few months after battling relegation with Everton, and less than four days after losing at Wolves, Lampard faces arguably the biggest test of his managerial career. However, coming up against the holders Madrid will allow the interim Blues boss a shot at Champions League redemption after conceding the reins to eventual winner Thomas Tuchel in 2021.