Lampard talks player power at Chelsea - "That's a load of crap!"
I think it's safe to say that many of us have been waiting for Frank Lampard to give an in depth interview about life at Chelsea and ...
I think it's safe to say that many of us have been waiting for Frank Lampard to give an in depth interview about life at Chelsea and leaving the club after 13 years. This past week, Lampard has done exactly that and it's interesting reading.
First up is a question we all expected to be asked and that relates to player power. Many people have spoken of what happened to the likes of Andre Villas Boas and "Big Phil" Scolari after reports had circulated around the press that player power at Chelsea forced both of them out.
When asked what happened, Lampard was quick to respond and completely deny the accusations at the time. He said:
"AVB had played his cards and it hadn't worked. I don't know if he was too young or whether it had come too early for him.
One thing I will address is that a lot of people said when he and Phil Scolari and some of the other managers left it was all down to player power at Chelsea. That's a load of crap. I'm being completely honest. OK, AVB and I were not very close but I don't need to be close to my manager - but I am definitely not the type to act up.
No one at the club was. Even Ash [Cole], who I know wasn't happy not playing week-in week-out, would never have run off and said, 'Please sack the manager, we've had enough of him'. That's plain ridiculous. We are professionals. Can you imagine what Roman Abramovich would've said to him? 'I pay your wages, I make the decisions, now f--- off and play.'"
Brilliant from Lampard and should put an end to the reports that had surfaced at that time and still get spoken of now.
I have said it at the time AVB was sacked, Scolari and after Roberto Di Matteo was, the expectations at Chelsea are so high now that if it seems that our form is in decline, and there is a real danger of missing out on Champions League qualification for that season, the club will act and have done so.
In addition, you have to get the best out of the players you have at your disposal. AVB is a perfect example of that. He did EXACTLY that with his Porto side that took Europe by storm during the season before he came to Chelsea.
So he comes to Chelsea and rather than get the best out of what he had available in the playing squad and playing to their strengths, he decides to try and make them change to play his way (high defensive line - John Terry for example) and it simply never worked.
Scolari suffered with the same issues but Roberto Di Matteo did the right thing when he took over. He adjusted our playing style to the way it suited the players and had the success he did in the FA Cup and Champions League.
Unfortunately, he decided to change our style before we had the players to do so and during the second season it fell apart and he was sacked.
I agree 100% with Lampard here and always thought talk of player power was complete nonsense. What do you think?