Frank Lampard has ended talks with Norwich City over becoming their next manager and there now appears to be only one candidate, according to various reports.
It was reported on Thursday that Lampard had held productive talks with Norwich over taking charge. The Canaries are on the lookout for a replacement for Daniel Farke, whom they sacked last weekend.
Some sources even went as far as to suggest Lampard had reached an agreement with Norwich. He had been chosen for his similar philosophy to Farke, who won two promotions with the club but has encountered difficulties at Premier League level.
Former Chelsea boss Lampard could have been a breath of fresh air without changing too much at Carrow Road. However, any talk of him only needing to put pen to paper appears to have been premature.
According to various sources, including The Times, talkSPORT, Sky Sports and the BBC, Lampard is no longer in contention to take the Norwich vacancy, despite impressing club chiefs who thought he could also attract top players.
The reasons for the collapse are as yet unclear, but it will force the club to speed up their search for an alternative.
Sky claim the next in line will be Dean Smith, who recently lost his job with Aston Villa. Smith struggled to find a winning combination from the plethora of players Villa signed in the summer after selling Jack Grealish.
Despite being the man who lifted them back into the Premier League, Villa sacked Smith in November.
Smith straight back into work?
He may not have to wait too long to get back in work, though. He was recently revealed to be on a two-man shortlist for the Norwich job, along with Lampard.
Now the latter is out of the running, Smith could have a clear run at the appointment process if he wants it.
Smith, who is currently in the USA, was interviewed by Norwich on Thursday. He reportedly impressed with his knowledge of the squad, playing style and club culture. But he is yet to decide if he does want the job.
According to Sky, Norwich will wait until Sunday at the earliest to make a decision over their next manager. They want to ensure they make the right direction in the best interests of the club’s future.
It remains to be seen who will be in charge for their first game after the international break. Norwich are next in action at home to Southampton on 20th November.