Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has claimed he is judged more harshly compared to other managers of Premier League ‘Big Six’ clubs because he is English.
As an English coach at a top side, Lampard is something of a rarity. He is the first Englishman to manage in two Champions League seasons since Bobby Robson, who led Porto, PSV Eindhoven and Newcastle in the competitions in the 1990s and 2000s.
The 42-year-old, a Chelsea legend during his playing career, got the job at Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2019 after only a single season of managerial experience under his belt at Derby.
“When I got this job, a lot of people were questioning me getting it,” Lampard said, via Chelsea’s official website, ahead of facing Krasnodar in the Champion League on Wednesday night.
“A lot of people also asked me, ‘Are you sure you want to take it?’ because of opinions.
“Sometimes people can be very quick to form opinions straight away for whatever reason and being a young English manager with only one year at Derby, some of that I understood.
“We just need to judge people on face value. It doesn’t matter where you're from, I think all managers should be judged the same.”
Lampard claimed people and clubs are still more drawn to foreign coaches because they are seen as ‘new and trendy’, while English managers have the reputation of being on a Premier League ‘merry-go-round’, hired and sacked by club after club.
However, some have criticised Lampard for his comments, suggesting that his status as an all-time great of the Premier League has so far protected him from the same level of scrutiny that has been directed at Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, similarly inexperienced at the top level.
Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho have all won trophies over the course of long careers, while he is arguably much less qualified than Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, who spent three years as assistant manager at Manchester City prior to getting his job.