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Frank Lampard has hit back at Jorginho’s criticism about his Chelsea stint after the Italy international claimed the club legend wasn’t ready to take on a job of that magnitude. The 42-year-old joined the Blues from Derby County.
His first term back at Stamford Bridge was considered a success after he secured Champions League qualification, despite working under a transfer ban. But things quickly began to unravel before he was sacked in January.
Lampard told the Telegraph: “It’s always going to be a fact as a manager when you leave a club, there will be some players who did not play so much and they might have a feeling or a judgement on how you work and they can make statements.
“For me, I have to expect that as much as I expect the good statements from players who are really positive about how you work. I’ve got no big issue with that. “I’ve seen some quotes saying that Frank Lampard took this job with his heart. I absolutely didn’t. I don’t make any professional decisions with my heart. Maybe I’m the absolute opposite of that. I’ll go over them a hundred times in my head, but I certainly didn’t with my heart. I took it with a pragmatic view of: ‘what’s the situation? OK, this is Chelsea, I’m going from Derby to Chelsea.
Not many managers would turn that down head or heart, let’s get it right. After my year at Derby, I was pretty clear that I wanted to go into Chelsea, make them move the ball quicker, make them penetrate lines quicker. I wanted to go and do my thing and try to bring through some younger players into the team. I did that. I didn’t get to the end game, but I certainly think I did a lot of things that I can be proud of.
“I come away with an overall feeling of pride in what I did in the job. I wanted to stay longer, I wanted real tangible success which, at Chelsea, is winning cups and winning leagues, but it didn’t happen. Hopefully, from where I took over the job, I’ve laid down strong foundations for the future and in the context of where I wanted my managerial career to go, it was an amazing experience.”
Meanwhile, he was touched by Thomas Tuchel’s recent remarks and tributes about Lampard’s management and what he inherited as well as taking particular pride in seeing Mason Mount’s development.
“I appreciated his (Tuchel’s) words last week,” said Lampard. “I was pleased to hear them because I think it’s right. I’m not just giving myself credit. But if I was in his shoes I would certainly speak like that so he’s giving me credit for the first half of the season.
“He’s taken it on and I’ll give him credit for that as well because to reach two finals and to be in contention for the top four, I know that battle from last year, we were in it last year and it’s tough battle, especially in the run-in.”