Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic has said that training under Maurizio Sarri was “monotonous” and has hailed the approach taken by Frank Lampard.
Sarri was in charge of Chelsea for the 2018-19 campaign, and guided the Blues to a top-four finish in the Premier League and to Europa League success.
The Italian tactician decided to part company with the London club at the end of last season and was subsequently appointed the head coach of Italian giants Juventus.
Although Sarri’s time at Chelsea was a success, not all fans were impressed with his playing style and were not fully convinced by ‘Sarri-ball’.
The 61-year-old signed Kovacic on a season-long loan deal from Real Madrid in the summer of 2018, and the Croatia international midfielder established himself as an important player for Chelsea.
The 25-year-old made 21 starts and 11 substitute appearances in the Premier League last season, providing two assists in the process, and he also played in 12 Europa League fixtures.
Chelsea legend Lampard was appointed the manager of the Blues in the summer of 2019, and the team are doing well under him.
The Blues are fourth in the league table with 41 points from 25 matches and have progressed to the last-16 stage of the Champions League.
Kovacic, who made his loan deal permanent in the summer of 2019, has raved about Lampard and has described him as an “exceptional manager”, and has outlined how he is different from his predecessor Sarri.
“He has kept the character he had as a player in his personality as a coach, which has inspired all of us.
“He commits himself with everything he’s got. Training is always challenging and different from last season.
“That’s probably the main difference between Lampard and Sarri, who made the concept of training quite monotonous.There were a lot of similar training sessions with a focus on tactical preparation.”
Kovacic has made 15 starts and seven substitute appearances in the Premier League for Chelsea under Lampard this season, scoring one goal and providing three assists in the process.
The Croatia international has also made five starts and one substitute appearance in the Champions League this campaign, scoring one goal in the process.