Official: Chelsea hire Frank Lampard
Lampard's return to Chelsea has been one of the worst kept secrets in football this summer, with various news outlets linking him to the post for several weeks now. On Thursday morning, however, Chelsea officially announced the appointment of the 41 year-old with a statement on their website.
"One of the greatest players in our history during his long and illustrious career, Lampard returns to Stamford Bridge having signed a three-year contract", the announcement read.
Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia added: ‘It gives us great pleasure to welcome Frank back to Chelsea as head coach. Frank possesses fantastic knowledge and understanding of the club and last season, he demonstrated he is one of the most talented young coaches in the game".
The appointment of Lampard by 'The Blues' could be seen of something as a risk giving his limited managerial experience, although he did fare well during his debut season in the dugout as he led an unfancied Derby County side to a Championship playoff final, where they narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League after losing 2-1 to Aston Villa.
Having scored 209 goals in 640 appearances at the London-based club, Lampard is a club legend, and his return to the club will no doubt be a popular one with Chelsea fans. In fact, the former England international has really been the only name linked with the job at Stamford Bridge since Italian manager Maurizio Sarri left for Juventus in June.
Lampard may have quite a job on his hands to steer Chelsea to a top-four finish, however, as he inherits a side bereft of star quality following the departure of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid. Furthermore, with the club unable to sign players due to a two-window transfer ban, he may need to look towards Chelsea's youth and build for the future.
Chelsea's new boss also gave a short statement in which he expressed his desire to hit the ground running: "I am immensely proud to be returning to Chelsea as head coach. Everyone knows my love for this club and the history we have shared, however, my sole focus is on the job in hand and preparing for the season ahead. I am here to work hard, bring further success to the club and I cannot wait to get started".