Chelsea’s board reportedly remain torn over whether to sack Frank Lampard after a string of poor results – but one man who looks unlikely to replace him in the Stamford Bridge hotseat is Thomas Tuchel.
The Blues have slipped to eighth and are now five points short of Liverpool in fourth, having played a game more. Indeed, a win for the Reds on Thursday evening will see Chelsea fall eight points short of the current Champions League.
During their recent decline – and in the words of the Daily Mirror -‘morale has plummeted’ and an ‘expensively-assembled squad look like total strangers’.
After their latest defeat – a 2-0 loss at Leicester on Tuesday – Chelsea have now lost five of their last eight games. After the defeat, Lampard admitted his concerns and suggested at lowering the expectations of his side.
However, growing reports suggest time will not be on his side and that Chelsea are ready to replace him.
Therefore, there have been rumours that Roman Abramovich could sack Lampard and bring in a more experienced replacement.
One of the strongest options open to Chelsea is Tuchel. The German is currently out of work, having recently been axed by Paris Saint-Germain. Indeed, The Guardian claims the Blues have been alerted to Tuchel’s apparent interest in succeeding Lampard.
They report Chelsea want to bring in a manager capable of getting the best from Kai Havertz and Timo Werner. The German duo signed for huge sums this summer, but neither have found their feet at the club. Havertz has drifted in and out of the side. Werner, meanwhile, has netted just once in his last 15 appearances.
However, the report claims members of Chelsea’s board are unconvinced by Tuchel. Despite his success at PSG, his sometimes spikey persona did not always go down well in France.
Six months before his sacking, Tuchel gave an interview that questioned the politcs at PSG.
“To be completely honest, during the first six months, I said to myself, ‘am I still a manager or am I a politician in sport, a minister for sports? Where is my role as manager in such a club now?’ I said to myself, ‘I just want to coach’,” Tuchel told Sport1.
“That is why, I think, I became a coach and that is why I still am. I can find myself anywhere. Anywhere where there is a half-pitch to train and a DVD player to make videos.
“At its heart, I love the game and I can get this satisfaction in many ways as a manager.
“Sometimes, it is very easy, sometimes, it is a big challenge. That’s because a club like PSG, has a number of influences in it aside from the focused interest of the team.
“I only love football. And in a club like this, it is not always just football.”
Many observers in the French game felt that interview ultimately cost Tuchel his job.
Furthermore, it may also count against him when it comes to potentially succeeding Lampard.
Indeed, Chelsea are said to now have serious reservations about turning to the 47-year-old. As such, the German looks to be out of the running to succeed Lampard.
Allegri the clear Chelsea favourite
It all means Chelsea could well turn to another experienced coach in Massimiliano Allegri were they to sack Lampard.
Allegri has been out of work since leaving Juventus in 2019 after guiding them to five Serie A titles in a row. He also previously led AC Milan to the Italian league title.
Now, according to The Athletic, he is very much among those being considered by the Blues. While his English isn’t as good as Tuchel’s, he has been undergoing English lessons during his sabbatical.
The Blues could also yet turn to Avram Grant.
Lampard was last week reported to still have some support within the Chelsea boardroom.
Whether that still remains the case is to be seen.
As such, our sources informed us that Abramovich was considering bringing Grant back in some capacity to help Lampard.
Grant, 65, is currently talking to a number of clubs, mainly in the Middle East. He recently served as a football consultant in Indian football.
Grant could yet be considered as a direct replacement himself. However, it is more probable that Chelsea will bring in a bigger name; hence the links to Tuchel and Allegri.