Thoughts of a Lunatic: The Ex One, Blood on Lampard’s Hands and Other Talking Points

In the world of football these days, be careful of what you say or do because what you say or do shall be used to drag you in the court of banter.

The UEFA Champions League and Europa League quarterfinal draws must have been made while you are reading this. We already know those that were booted out. Some GOATs were pulled out with their horns, no one confused their bleatings for the roaring of lions. One of the GOATs even promised to deliver a Champions League trophy, just as a Nigerian musician promised to deliver the Grammy. To be nice to him, he was one of those that inspired those that have finally delivered it. Back to the GOAT, the matter is about even keeping him in his barn right now before there can be talks of delivering another Champions League trophy.

The Ex One

Jose Mourinho has had many monikers in his managerial career. The first and the most popular one being The Special One. He was indeed special, he delivered trophies wherever he went to. The name Mourinho became synonymous with success. He called fellow managers names and dragged many of them in the mud.

Once a special one

On joining Tottenham, he gave himself a new moniker – the Experienced One. According to him, he had seen it all. The highs and the lows, getting fired and getting hired. After the disapointment of Manchester United, he appears to have seen it all, there is barely any top club that will want to take the risk on Mourinho any longer. He however made a mistake, the moniker should start with ‘Ex’ but should be the Expired One. Taking over at Tottenham was seen as a sign of his fallen stocks and it wouldn’t have gotten worse than losing a 2-0 first leg lead against Dynamo Zagreb. By the way, Dynamo Zagreb’s manager left his post on the eve of the second leg as he is set to go to jail. This is win should have been his get out of jail card but his imprisonment has nothing to do with football.

Blood on Lampard’s Hands

Since Thomas Tuchel took over at Chelsea, there has been a complete turn around from the Frank Lampard years. Chelsea seems to be enjoying more than a new managers bounce under Tuchel. They have not lost in 13 and have kept 11 clean sheets in that time. Chelsea and clean sheets were hardly in the same sentence during Lampard’s reign. They drank goals like 33 Lager beer. Though Kepa ‘Aribisagba’ had his own shortcomings, he was largely a scapegoat of a poor system. The team looks very solid under Tuchel, with the same set of players.

Chelsea could barely defend under Lampard

Many of the players looked bad bar Lampard’s beloved son – Mason Mount. Lampard has blood on his hands for how bad he made Chelsea look.

It is not absolute fun saying positives about Chelsea or anyone as far as the Lunatic is concerned. I hope Roman Abramovich feels bored very soon, sacks Tuchel and brings in maybe Didier Drogba, so we have more fun things to say.

In other matters. So Arsenal does a clear out that involves Sokratis Papastho… whatever. He plays against Arsenal with Olympiakos Piraeus at the Emirates stadium and he leaves with a clean sheet. Luckily for Arsenal, they had done the job in the first leg. And also luckily for them, they won’t be playing against Schalke 04 anytime soon.

That’s all that came to the mind of the Lunatic today. See you some other time.

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What next for Frank Lampard?

It is perhaps too early to put Super Frankie in the bracket of ‘Super player – mediocre manager’.

The illustrious club that has the likes of Gary Neville, Roy Keane, Tony Adams etc. cannot admit Frank Lampard yet. His reign at Chelsea can be best termed – ‘arrived early, left early’.

Lampard back in the labour market

We thought Roman Abramovich had turned a new leaf when he appointed Lampard in the first place. We thought Chelsea had found their ‘ride and die’ until Monday morning when the news hit like Dustin Poirier punches on Connor McGregor. Well, we were not supposed to be surprised, firing and hiring managers has become a culture at Chelsea. But as stated earlier, Lampard was not in the ilk of their type of managers when he was appointed. However, it had the potential of a Cinderella story. Lampard, a legend at the club, taking over the club and leading them to glory. It appeared like Lampard could be to Chelsea what Pep Guardiola was to Barcelona and Zinedine Zidane was to Real Madrid. It was also Chelsea joining the tradition of having former players at the helms. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is at Manchester United and Arsenal have also gone for Mikel Arteta. It also seemed like a marriage of convenience, at a time Chelsea were under a transfer ban and they needed someone that was their own to help them through the period.

Lampard joined a trend of young former players managing their former clubs

All those said, Lampard never looked like a well thought out plan at the outset. Though there were some glimpses at Derby County, it was not enough to trust him with a job as demanding and unforgiving like the Chelsea job. The safest option could have been keeping Maurizio Sarri on the job. Now that it is all done, what next for Lampard?

Lampard was always going to manage Chelsea at a point but it came too early. Even at that, never rule out a second coming. However, it could be a long and rough road to his second coming. Now is the time for Lampard to pay the dues he could have avoided paying if Chelsea had stuck with him. Reality is, Lampard will not get a top job in England, at least not anytime soon. He has to probably return to the Championship and work his way back to the top. Another option is to get a job outside England where he can prove that he has what it takes to be a top coach.

Lampard at Chelsea was a manager that didn’t instill any noticeable identity. It was difficult to define his style and notice his imprint on the team. Lampard has to work on that, almost all top coaches are synonymous with a style. Even when results are not going their way there is always the tendency to see the process and trust them. That did not happen with Lampard in his 18 months at Chelsea, probably the reason why he was sacked.

Lampard’s first sack might be a minor setback

Another option is to admit that he might not be cut out for coaching. Becoming a Pundit has become quite lucrative for retired footballers. Lampard could swap the dugout for the studio were he gets the job done on touch screens rather than on the field of play. The likes of Neville, Adams, Tim Sherwood etc. are making waves, winning matches on touch screens.

However, it will be too early for Lampard to give up on coaching, there are signs he could have something to offer. Lampard might have taken a bite at the cherry too early, hindering his chance for a second bite. But as stated earlier, he will have to earn his second bite. He will have to work for it, it will not be given on a platter. The disappointment at Chelsea could be just a blip but only he (Lampard) can prove that.

Written by Babatomiwa Ojo

@10qmedia on Twitter